1221: The second thread in our saga

"That's a good idea."

Theodora smiles sweetly at Vipilius
"Surely every mage seeks their own challanges while some may rise to dearching for lost people , others may seek to plumb the despths of magical knowledge seeing that as a more fitting challange.
Addressing the others
"I will stay here as I think it may be best for one of us to remain in case some unanticipated magical event happens perhaps related to the faerie we dealt with last year"

pokes thread ooc

Titius looks at Theodora, slightly annoyed by the comment upon the searching of the lost Roto. Even though you do not believe that allies are of any worth the rest of us should assemble to start our journey. When does we leave?

"We don't need to rush our preparations. Whatever has happened to Roto has already happened.

"We might need to transport two people other than ourselves, maybe more. We might also want grogs. I can even imagine the hedge witch taking an interest.

"I propose we set sail for Visby in two days, and then to Novgorod. From there we can make other arrangements, as needed." Iohannes smiles. "It's a good season for it, and the trip will more than pay for itself. It probably won't even interfere with my reading."

Vispilius shrugs, a gesture of non-concern rather than indecision.

"Or we can send a small party ahead, to see if the trip is needed. If not, the ship can alter its destination toward the East, or in whatever direction seems best.

"Of course, it's also hard to say how far a ship can track the path of Roto, while I'm confident that if he has not passed from this earthly domain, we can assuredly follow him by flying broomstick.

"Either way, I could leave first thing tomorrow, and take five others with me, and perhaps more gear slung below additional sticks. However, as I can only concentrate on one at a time to change its flight, much more than that may prove awkward to keep herded together - but I'm always game to try!"

"Not much past Novgorod."

"It's 400 miles to Visby, mostly over water. One big mistake from fatigue--when do you plan to sleep--or a sudden storm, or a playful faerie, or even a sudden gust of wind, and we have a dead grog or worse. And if you get to Visby, tired from your long, uncomfortable journey, you won't be at your best to handle the situation you find there. At least I'd be tired! You might be made of sterner stuff. From Visby, it's another 750 miles to Moscow. I'm not going to fly on a stick for a long journey, especially one not under my control. Too much can go wrong, and probably will. If you want to do it this way, I'll not interfere; I'll find something else to do this season and let you handle this crisis as you see fit."

Iohannes adds, "I don't mean to pose this to you as a challenge. It's not necessarily the wrong thing to do, but being caught buck naked in the open sky, the grogs helpless, just one slip--and what if it gets cold? A sudden freeze could easily kill you all...." He shakes his head. "This isn't how I'd travel."

Vispilius frowns a bit, as if somewhere between perplexed and surprised.

"Life is a challenge, and every day, every moment a test, for us to pass or no. Perhaps you weren't listening earlier, but I said two days, and that did not mean 48 hours of flying. Perhaps to a mariner it's 400 miles from port to port, but but there is land across the water much closer than that, and a stop over there was what I had intended, with sleep under a roof or the stars as luck dictates, as is the case with travel.

"As for being caught 'naked', one can wear heavier cloaks than would be worn traveling, since there is no need to walk, only sit. I can get cold, but no worse than for those traveling at a fraction of the speed on the ground, and days longer for them. If bad weather approaches, I simply land and wait it out - probably more easily than with a large boat, since I have no need of harbor, only the nearest dry land, which I intend to stick near.

"As for the cold, I don't tend to travel in bad weather, tho' the climate seems less forgiving here than in the south of France. An Ignem spell would certainly overcome most any weather, but I've never needed one yet - wanted, perhaps, but never needed.

"If Roto is lost, time may be critical. I can get a half-dozen of us there, with baggage, before sunset of the day after tomorrow, and that only because it's past noon now, and so too late in the day today to start. And with a full night's sleep between the days, tho' the accommodations are a bit unpredictable, as with any 'overland' travel. How soon could your boat sail, and when would we arrive?"

"Moving at high speed puts the wind in one's face; sitting still while holding on tight to a stick keeps the blood and humors from circulating." He laughs. "And if one of your passengers is about to shit his pants, there's no way he'll be able to let you know. Or if someone loses his grip--your spell moves the stick, not the rider, if I remember rightly."

"But... there's no denying you can move quickly."

Iohannes smiles. "With good weather and no mishaps, you'd get there much faster. I could set sail tomorrow morning, or even late tonight--most of the crew hasn't started drinking yet. But I'd more likely leave late in the day or early evening tomorrow; there are any number of cargoes to be taken on, and I see no reason to waste the trip.

"We'd reach Visby two days later. This is abnormally good time, but there's little magic directly involved, unless I have to deal with the weather. We'd sail by day and night, and without hugging the shore. And we'd know our accomodations the whole way. If you don't get seasick, you can even get in some reading."

Iohannes leans back. "But if you want to travel faster, take the risks that come with it, and have the finesse to handle five or six sticks.... go for it."

Vispilius begins to chuckle, then laughs outright at some private joke.

"You're asking a Tytalus if he wants to 'take risks'? Oh, that is rich..."

He lets his mirth settle, then continues with a sigh, catching his breath.

"Oh, priceless... but you are imagining that this is more complex than it is - there is no finesse involved here, and I could have a hundred, a hundred hundreds of sticks in the air at once, all moving. Once given a command or a direction, the stick continues until changed. The only challenge is in getting each to move in the same direction, so a flock of several cannot be turned as one, but only one at a time, and keeping them together would take some forethought - hardly an obstacle, but merely something to consider.

"But it's clear there are advantages to both modes of travel. Let those who are to come make the decision, I will not make it for them."

He looks to the others, who have not voiced a preference, to speak their minds.

"As I have daid I prefer to remain at the covenant although there are some things I may be able to do to help , if there is an arcane connection to Roto I can investigate to see if he is dead . There may be some other things I can do with spirits to aid you but I have not tried to commune with the spirits of the baltic yet"

Iohannes agrees. "We don't all always need to drop everything whenever something happens. Isn't that part of the point of a covenant, to look out for each other? Sort of the way a good crew works together, and not always at the same time.

"For me, it's an easy choice to go. Unless the weather turns against us--and some of my crew will probably let me know if it will--and unless something unexpected happens that requires my full attention, I won't lose more than half a day of study. I've the best crew in the north and I do my best reading aboard ship, whervever she is." (OOC: Whom I should probably sketch out sometime.) Iohannes' sanctum is still the Sanctum Mysterium, which is where he has spent most of his time this past year, whether the ship is docked or at sea.

It seems as the ship is our best option here. And if I remember correctly Roto wasn’t to be found using the arcane connection that he home covenant has in their possession. If we travel by ship and if necessary bring something to read there will be a minimum of losses concerning study time. It could even be worth investigating if we can build a ship that can serve as a extension of our covenant and includes some laboratories, that is if we find ourselves travelling much in the future. I say that we make haste and try to loose as little time as possible.

"The messenger specifically said that they began to worry about Roto when the Arcane Connection they had failed to connect to him. I would suggest, then, that we take perhaps one or two grogs each, as well as the ship's compliment, for security wherever we find ourselves, and prepare to leave... tonight? First thing in the morning? I'm of the belief that there is no excuse for delay in this matter, but if the evening is needed for preparations, so be it."

"I wish you well in your journey and hope you are able to locate Roto, I will remain here to watch over the covenant while you are gone"

"I can think of an excuse or two.

"Our covenant, our research, all cost money. So does a ship and crew. It would be a great waste to travel to Visby and then Novgorod with empty holds, if we can take on a cargo at short notice and great profit.

"It's not only about the money.

"Our covenant, both through me and in its own regard, has a net of relationships within the city and further abroad, based on mutual advantage. Lubeck is a mercantile city, as much as Venice or Genoa! Every transaction I make, that we make, anchors our place in the city, and wins us allies, even friends. If we're traveling, it's good manners to allow our friends in Lubeck an opportunity to pay well for the journey.

"Also, one advantage of traveling through apparently mundane means is that we attract little attention and few questions. Traveling with a courier, missives and writs or a cargo helps that further.

"Whatever has happened to Roto has happened. He's either caught in a regio, imprisoned, dead.... who knows? He's been there for a few days already. An extra day isn't going to help him. And it lets us accomplish many things at once. And maybe you and the grogs can use a day or two to set your own affairs in order? Prepare?

"If I can find a cargo today, and take it on by end of day tomorrow, I'd like to do that.

"But... if both of you want to leave in the morning, I'll gather up the crew and we'll do it."

Thread poke! I'd like to resume our story, if possible. :slight_smile:


I see one of the following things happening:

  1. We leave in the morning, perhaps with a courier, passengers, some documents to deliver, a small but precious cargo or nothing at all. This happens either if Iohannes cannot find something.

  2. We leave a day later, with a cargo worth taking. This happens if Iohannes finds an opportunity worth his while; he might already know of something.

Since there has been no comment on this thread since my last, more than a week ago, I'd like to assume that there is no major objectio, and in the interest of getting things moving again, Iohannes goes and has his first mate rouse and gather the crew and ready the ship, and Iohannes procures a cargo, if he can.... and that you simply decide what has happened in the meantime.

Either way, tomorrow morning or the day after, we're on our way, with Florimel and perhaps the new PC--can we continue from there?



Yes, I was waiting for you guys to either go or not go...I'm cool.

[Rolls 0, 0. Ah, that's a tough break. Your covenant has some supplies of salted fish that it exports, but Visby has its own fishing fleets so the price is not going to be fantastic, and some of the local beer that you have really put aside for your own people and use but that you could make a production of putting aboard. And you have some empty chests and things you could pretend had valuable cargo in them, but there's something wrong at the moment with the economy of the town, and you are having trouble finding people with stuff to sell. You really will neede to look into this, eventually.

As for passengers, you have quite a few who'd like to go. Mostly the younger sons and daughters od powerful merchant families. Eight of them, acually. That's...well, that;s on the high side. Visby is one of the great centres of commerce right now, but still....]

Sure we can.

Outside the warehouse forming the public 'face' of the covenant a small group of people approaches on foot. Numbering five men, four are obvious men-at-arms in chain and leather. While their weaponry is not in hand, they do have a mien of distrust about them, eyeing the surrounding cityscape with no small dose of wariness. Strange to some, who would feel safer perhaps in the midst of such a throng of humanity.

A blue-cloaked man is the fifth figure, and of a different sort. Not a nobleman, merchant, or priest... and with accompaniment? The stranger does not seem to care overmuch about his strangeness, though it is plain to see for more than the passing eye. The other four stand sternly about him, protection he seems to take for granted with a casual ease. He is, it is apparent, accustomed to such accompaniment.

Knocking at the door the 'blue-cloak' takes a step back from it, his own attention returning the unfamiliar city. Hands settle upon his belt and sword-hilt as he waits for the knock's answer.

We'll have to look into the economy indeed. It might take more than a few casual Posing the Silent Questions (Iohannes has the spell, and can cast it Deftly) to find out, but Iohannes asks.

Meanwhile, passengers are a wonderful thing, especially rich ones. They pay well, and pay even better for speed. Best of all, they can be loaded on short notice--which lets us leave the next day.

Iohannes spends a little time with each of these young scions in a nice, stress-free environment--so many of them! He's surprised that they're all interested in Visby rather than Novgorod. He poses many silent questions about what's behind their journey... and other silent questions that come to mind based on what they say. Hell, and a few silent "fishing expedition" questions, that let them point Iohannes to information he wouldn't think to ask about.

Because that's the other great thing that makes rich passengers better than cargo, especially rich passengers.... Mentem.

Ten minutes with each passenger, PtSQing them repeatedly as they read and sign agreements, or some other, similar expected bother. A bit more trouble than Piercing the Mortal Veil.... but that's something to look forward to.