A largish room with a large, long table in the center surrounded by high back chairs. Fruit and pitchers of beer are on platters in at different places within easy reach of anyone siting. There are tapestries on each wall depicting various scenes from the Order's history.
Aleksandar has a small desk in the room and next to him sits a scribe. Two pages stand in the wings waiting for orders.
Ophelia arrives in the council chamber, having seen to her grogs and given them instructions to mix and mingle as best they can. Onassis has been directed to pair off with another of her squad to wander about so he can act as translator, and to do this several times so as to allow the men to get a chance to see what is around and assess security considerations individually. Ophelia is wearing a plain grey dress, the same one she wore for traveling. Her hair falls past her shoulders, loose, a somewhat uncommon look for her as it is normally in a bun, or at least in a ponytail for traveling. The loose hair softens her features, and some aging lines are apparent in her face, but nothing inconsistent with the standard hermetic look of a 35 year old person. She takes a seat that wouldn't appear to be the head of the table, but opposite the door into the chambers. If more than one door, she takes a seat in view of both.
Grabbing a pitcher, Ophelia pours herself a mug of beer. She contemplates chilling it, but decides not to for fear of chilling the entire room, should her magic outstrip her control.
Jane and Eve walk in, Jane still in her natural form. Jane the cat, largeish, white hair too shiny, eyes glassy and metalic irises. And she's... ticking. Eve is small, maybe 5'4", but she's thin. Hardly any fat, not much more muscle either. (Although the lack of fat means you can see it.) Her red hair is about down to her waist. And she has tattoo's on her arms of, well they look like writing, but its not in any script you've seen before. Eve also appears young. Maybe 20. She takes a seat.
I am Eve ex Verditius, 30 years post gauntlet despite the appearance.
Ophelia, of House Flambeau. Pleased to make your acquaintance. It was my understanding that this was a council of magi. If we are to bring others besides the steward into the meeting, I should like to bring one of my lieutenants."
Jane opens her mouth, talking, in near perfect Latin Alright, I'm going to go find some mice, you'll be okay on your own right?
I'm sure I'll be okay.
Eve gets up and opens the door for Jane, and Jane darts out.
Sorry about that, she wanted to check out the place. Didn't want me to get lost. Or something... she has some odd ideas. Please tell me the cooks know about familiars?
"I'm not in a position to tell you they are with any degree of certainty. It is very likely that they are, if they are servants of Tremere. I'm new here, as it would seem you are. Does your familiar prefer cooked food?" Ophelia asks the question with some measure of curiosity.
Moments after the 'cat' is let out the door opens again, as if blown open by a wind over a graveyard. Framing the open door way a moment later stands a sriking figure. He is tall and slim, with pale skin that has a certain luminescence to it. His black hair reaches his collar and is casually swept back, but otherwise is not styled. A silver ring with an emerald adorns his left hand, the fingers long and thin, almost feminine. He is dressed well, in dark fabrics and courtly style. He stands in the doorway for several moments, his black eyes scanning the room and all within before he takes a step inside and walks to the table and pulls a chair out for himself. He sits a moment later and looks at those present for uncomfortable moments before finally saying in cultured Latin that carries traces of the local accent.
"Good evening...I am Zoltan ex Merinita." and bows slightly.
((the 'z' in his first name pronounced like the 's' in measure))
Diotima enters the council chamber. She has made sure she would be the last to arrive except for Laterala if the Tremere chose to make her own entrance, and has dressed carefully. She is wearing the beautiful silk robes of a Byzantine noblewoman, and a veil covers her hair. A beautiful, large feather is pinned to her breast, flowing from black to purple to gold to siver, from the tip to the base. On her right arm Diotima wears a long decorated leather gauntlet, of the type used by falconers, and on the gauntlet perches a two headed eagle.
"Greetings, Sodales. I am Diotima ex Jerbiton, and this is my familiar, Peripha."
((Yes, I know Ophelia doesn't want the familiar presents. I'll be sure to send Peripha away as soon as she asks))
Zoltan stands as the new person enters the room and bows after her introduction.
"Zoltan ex Merinita" he says by way of introduction and his eyes seem to absorb some of the light in the room as he looks at the newcomer and her strange bird.
After a few perhaps tense moments he turns away to sit back at the table. He gestures with one hand to Ophelia. "Ophelia of the Flambeau. Diotima of Jerbiton." he points to either lady and then his gaze falls on the third and he quirks his head slightly to the side as the black orbs examine the one that is unnamed (to him) so far. His shadow seems to lengthen across the table as he maintains the impassive but unnerving stare. "And you are?" he asks suddenly, snapping the tension like a breaking branch.
Eve ex Verditius, is that everyone? Except for Laterala of course. To answer your earlier question, Jane does liked cooked food, but she also likes to eat as soon as she catches her prey. It can be quite the quandary for her.
Zoltan arches an eyebrow at the statement and seems to consider it for several moments as he stares with his unblinking eyes. Again the silence and stare carries on for longer than many would consider polite or proper, before he speaks. "And, Eve ex Verditius,...who is this...Jane?"
Zoltan's stare seems to intensify on Eve for more uncomfortable seconds before he finally speaks, interrupting the uncomfortable silence. "And Jane...does Jane eat dogs? If so I would keep her well fed indeed." He maintains his deadly serious expression for several more seconds before he bursts out in giggles and polite laughter, what seems to be his first real human expression since he came in. He laughs behind his hand just a bit more before his serious expression returns. "That is a joke. But...does Jane eat dogs?"
When Diotima enters Ophelia queries, Diotima? A fellow Theban expatriate?" At mention of the familiar. "I'm pleased to make your familiar's acquaintance, if it's your intention that she stays, I would ask that one of my lieutenants attends the meeting, too."
Don't think Jane ever has eaten any dogs, but lets not give her any ideas. The last thing we need is townsfolk complaining that a monstrous cat killed their dog and then flew away with it. I guarantee you we will be blamed.
Diotima cocks her head as she 'listens' to her familiar.
"No, Peripha, she did not mean to say you were a lowly lieutenant. You are a magnificent eagle, emperor of the sky, and no, we won't be feeding you dogs. You said dogs didn't taste good, remember, too stringy ? On the other hand I'm sure the countryside nearby is full of stupid birds who think they are too big to have to worry about being eaten when they fly. Why don't you go find out ?"
Diotima walks to a window and gives her familiar a boost - a small one, for he is quite heavy - to get him airborne. Then she turns to Ophelia
"There, she is leaving. And a good thing she isn't really interested in council meetings, or she would be sulking for days. Or, more likely, trying to start a staring contest with you."
Zoltan sits quietly for a few moments before speaking. "So there is a purpose for this Oppida, involving studies of various things nearby. One being the Fae. Am I assuming too much if I were to say I am the expert on that particular subject?"
"My expertise in that area is slight, but not insignificant. Typically involves defeating them in combat and then rendering them down for vis when they are too problematic for covenant's to deal with." She says this without any malice towards Zoltan, simply as a fact. She absently picks at a loose thread on her left sleeve. Ophelia doesn't appear to be very strong, no bulging biceps and no weapons upon her person. The idea that she goes out hunting faeries is at odds with the woman that sits before everyone.