1224.1 Vassal, Vassal, On The Wall

For meta-irony, I say that we should just lift this petitioning covenant whole cloth from a retired campaign here on the forum. Novus Mane, perhaps? Albion? New Home? Matters of the Heart? Curse of the Rhine Gorge (minus my character there, who is another variation on Viscaria). I do not want them to be Guernicus pawns, but that means we'll need a reason for why they want to become our vassal.

I rolled randomly to determine when they show up. Fiona is Princeps this season.

IMO, Novus Mane is quite appropriate. It is in the same tribunal, and is affected by the lotharingian debate.

That makes things bunches easier.

Novus Mane is currently a vassal of Florum, generates income from fishing, and is located in Flanders. About 3 days travel from DePanne. Assuming its coastal this, irritatingly, puts it smack dab on top of Spider's Palace.

So, I say that it is actually located IN/Near DePanne, at the very northwestern edge of Flanders.

Note that this implies a close geographic connection to Florum.

If it is Novus Mane, and we move the covenant in whole over here, which I'm not entirely comfortable with unless we get permission from all the participants of that saga[1], then there needs to be some reason why they are either new as of 1224.1 or why they want to switch allegiance from Florum to Mons Electi.

I have no objection that this covenant is a staunch ally of Mons Electi, and they will not be Guernicus pawns and it being some kind of trick.

[1] I have a problem with Arya's characters, but, because she rage quit and they are only snippets of specialties and where they live, it's a little bit different. They also won't be all mega-awesome exemplars of being from the best house ever.

AFAIK, The Fixer is the only one from that game who is still active on the forums.

Still... I don't care for the idea of appropriating someone else's characters for our purposes, without having their say-so. Inspiration, sure, no problem, but lifting the covenant as a whole, and including the same characters is a bit of an issue.

Well, I have different attitudes about intellectual property than you do, it seems. What if I were to say that we were using their names and backgrounds, but not their mechanical stats?

My intent in using them is the same as I used characters from fiction in Phoenix. The known value simultaneously paints a deeper picture while also obfuscating their differences from the source material.

As for why....the back story of Novus Mane is that it has returned to Spring, after all the existing members died except for a recently-gauntleted apprentice. The new magi have no reason to be loyal to Florum, and some are not Normandy raised, so the concept of fuedalism sits hard on them. They heard of how we handled the Astingani situation, and so think we might be interested in acquiring a vassal. In particular, they hope that by joining with the legendarily wealthy Mons Electi, their own meager financial situation will be improved.

I'd rather use their mechanical stats and change their names and backgrounds. :smiley: IIRC, ladyphoenix is still on the forums occasionaly, and she was a player there.

Characters from fiction? I have no issue with, personally. It's a different level of ownership. RPGer's have a lot of ownership issues, I'd really not have to deal with mere chance of confrontation over this someday...

Well, vassalage doesn't work that way. The Covenant is what is the vassal to the liege of Florum. The members of the covenant may want to change their liege, but the covenant cannot without being released by Florum or having a legal issue which they prosecute. If Novus Mane were to become a vassal of Mons Electi, the easiest method is for Florum to transfer the vassalage. Others require a tribunal to resolve the claim and then acknowledge the new vassalage agreement.

Okay. Since I moved the covenant to DePanne, how about if we rename the covenant to that?

Dude! You just revealed the gorram plot twist! ~smack~ Bad SG!

Seriously, though. AFAIK, the only person in Mons Electi who has CoH is the gorram spider. Whose to say all these out-of-towners camping in DePanne's buildings know any better? So what if there are legal complications to the request? Does it stop politicians from making promises about cutting taxes?

Making magi muddle through legal issues they don't understand which don't actually exist is half the fun of ArM!

EDIT: And hey, Mons Electi is huge! Fulla magi. If you don't want the covenant as a vassal, how about setting us up as a new covenant?

Well, umm, not really. Remember Mons Electi had a vassal for a short time, the vassal pressed a claim against Montverte, which did not fight it, and was released from their vassalage. So Fiona at the very least should be familiar with some of it, though may not have CoH to any degree and may not understand all the vagaries of how vassalage can be transferred, or cancelled. Marcus has CoH, but he's also an NPCish creature...
And as to the overall issue of story...it's one of pacing. I'm not sure I can give this story a decent amount of attention, and so it must be expository, rather than experienced/worked through. I'm not against ME having a vassal, it just probably needs to be a new covenant, and they have to be asking for a reason, especially if they are in Flanders and are hopeful that they will be in a newly forming Tribunal soon. Who's making those reasons? Me'?

As long as you keep posting in this thread, yeah. You'll be a part of figuring that out. :wink:

Naw, just keep picking holes while we figure it out. I feel like I've made a bunch of suggestions. I'll wait until others respond to this thread before moving forward.

Actually, I'll make this one more suggestion, based on your comments so far : instead of having them start as vassals of Florum, let's make them independants, somewhere else on the coast, and they're seeking vassalage from us because they're a new covenant and they've been raided repeatedly by Montverte. Their small fishing fleet has just been destroyed in a raid, and now they have no income source.

Tangent: As a Chicago-born city boy, do you know what I find most weird about Europe? The complete lack of Great Lakes. I was going to suggest they weren't on the ocean coast, but.....no Great Lakes.

Fiona has Code of Hermes 3, with a Specialization of "Political Intrigue." May come in handy, maybe not.

Yeah, just glanced at Google Maps of America and Europe...and it looks like some of the Great Lakes are about the same size as some of the European countries. Lake Superior is between Austria and the Czech Republic, which would make it like the 24th largest country in Europe (out of 50).

Fixer is not the only one from Novus Main still active ( jebrick <--Halvard). I could easily remake him as an NPC.

Novus Main had some problems by being poor. It also owes it's Tribunal vote to Florum. If they kept with what was done in NM then Florum would never let them go unless they know for certain that we would vote for the Lotharingian Tribunal.

They would not have to move as vassals do not have to be close to their lieges. They have a strong aura.

Roof of the world would not work even though they are in the Alps. Too much similarities with at least two of the Magus. Curse of the Rhine gorge were making their Covenant in Westerwald which is closer to Fengheld than France.

I specifically didn't address other covenants mentioned because they exist in different Tribunals, and thus would not make a good vassal in the scope of the Normandy Tribunal. A chapterhouse arrangement? Perhaps, but that's a bit different and isn't at all helpful within the context of the Normandy Tribunal.

On the issue of Novus Mane. If Fixer and jebrick want to lift their PCs from Novus Mane into a newly minted covenant and make them a parallel universe version of the original, I'm fine with that. Ra'am in this saga likely isn't exactly the same as he would be if Phoenix had progressed to this point. Talia, Tektonius and other characters I've made here are not exactly identical to the versions I've made elsewhere. Apollodorus was even merged with the original concept for this saga (a gently gifted Jerbiton who stumbles on the Guernicus secret and stays a recluse, or a Tremere who stumbled on the secret) Talia might be identical, but she's pretty easy to play, doesn't have man useful skills to this saga and any nexus between here and there is pretty easy to control. Tektonius I listed as a possible lab rat for hire. I'll alter him a bit from what he was in that other saga which shall not be named, but his essence and back story will remain the same (a crippled Gift by a sadistic master). I'm working on a version of Anemone from Legacy of Rome to include as part of a coenobium to take part in the Tournament.

I do not mind redoing Halvard. He was a bad experiment that I tried to do too many things with and thus was good at nothing.

On a side note. I should post my Legacy of Rome Magus. He would need some approval as I made what I call a House Mystery Cult for him. The basic principle behind that is I think that each House could have it's own mysteries ( in the form of cults) even though the House is not based on Mysteries. So I made the Cult of the Dead for the Tremere. It was a lot of work for a saga that never got moving.

Jebrick, I suggested removing the Florum vassalage and moving them because keeping them as is, yet having them request vassalage, would imply greater political ramifications than JL consented to when I requested this story.

So, it seems what we have so far is:

  • Like Novus Mane, the previous magi went nova, leaving only the recently gauntleted Verditus apprentice in charge (I can play him.)
  • New magi (Wirth and Havlard, played by their previous players), join the covenant. Possibly others if other players want to pick up a character
  • Being young'uns, they are unable to withstand the raiding from Montverte, which has most recently, destroyed their fishing fleet, which was their sole income source.
  • Thus, they come to us for aid and vassalage

Does this outline sound good?


And Marko Markoko wrote to me. He'd like to play Roberto again. So, maybe, we can convince him to do just that :smiley:

I am cool with this -- nay, excited at the prospect of playing with Marko, but imagine a slippery slope wherein we are advancing the entire Order of Hermes seasonally. On spreadsheets. Which get published by Atlas.

Since "Novus Mane" was probably meant to translate to "New Morning," I suggest we rename it to "Ex Tenebris Aurora" (From Darkness Comes Dawn). Others are free to suggest other names, or other tweaks than the ones that I've been strong-arming in, but we've got enough bare bones settled now to start the chapter.


The road from Autun to Mons Electi is new, by the standards of Autun, but hard and smooth, supernaturally so in some places.

Aernoudt Roger de Verditus had insisted on building the carriage himself in his laboratory, using up the last of the covenant's vis stocks. True, what few seisin they had were in no jeopardy of being lost, and no doubt an enchanted wagon would be of great value, once he'd actually put some magical effects into it. And in the end, getting the huge thing down from the tower had been easier than initially imagined (though, initially, it had been imagined to be impossible).

Yet, if Aernoudt thought he was fooling anyone about why he'd enchanted such an ornate and noble carriage on the very eve of the Council's decision to seek vassalage, he was most likely mistaken. His pater had been the last of the founders of Ex Tenebris Aurora, over a century ago, and Aernoudt had been the only apprentice who had wished to stay much past their Gauntlet. In a sense, a sense that was very real and very bitter to Aernoudt, he was the last guardian of the original vision for his covenant. His new sodales were welcome hands in the prospect of much labor but they knew nothing of the spirit of his old covenant.

They were building something new. Aernoudt was trying to save something old, and precious only to him, it sometimes seemed.

So, he had built the ornate carriage, and he had packed his finest robes, and he had insisted on coming with, and using the Reins. "Verditus make for good bargaining tools," he argued. "They'll want to pledge us just for the discounts that I might offer them. You're sure that they will be willing to stand up to Montverte?"

He could still see the burning ships and the devastated harbor. Some of the surviving villagers were talking about turning to piracy, he knew. Aernoudt found the idea nearly sacrilegious, although the sad truth was that there were no boats for them to pillage with anyway. Well, none except for....

He shook his head and tried to listen to what his sodales were saying.

((As a side note before full RP happens... I understand that the magi of Ex Tenebris Aurora (NM) were not much past gauntle. Perhaps 5 years. I know that if Roberto is going to be a full magi then he needs to be at least 30 years post gauntlet. Are we thinking that most of the magi at Ex Tenebris Aurora are that old or just Roberto or just not known??))

OOC: If Roberto is doing a guest appearance, then keep him and the others at 5 years. If he's joining the campaign permanently then that's up to JL.