1260.4 - Opening Moves

Damasus wound his ways through the corridors of Coeris. A summons from Juturnus caused this detour on his way to Héviz. Totally unavoidable due to his past problems.

Banished to the most dangerous research oppidum in all of Translyvania. Perhaps I'll hear what is happening now.

He made it to the next checkpoint and once again was checked. The guards knew when he left the last one and where he said he was going to they had a rough idea for how long it took to walk the corridors to get here. At least Juturnus' office was just around the corner.

He entered into a small antechamber with several seats near a fire. The door to the inner office was close and he knew better than to just enter. Juturnus' shield grog, Yavor, stood by the door and nodded to him but did not move. Damasus began to speak but Yavor held up a hand and turned his head as if listening. After about 10 seconds, he opened the door and bowed slightly as Damasus entered.

Juturnus rose from behind his desk and came out to greet Damasus. He was still a striking figure. Tall and black. Found in Levant as a child and trained as a spy. He cleaned up messes for the House. Juturnus gestured to a seat and then resumed his seat behind his desk.

I am happy that you accepted the position at Héviz. What do you know about the oppidum and about the aedile, Laterala?

Damasus was still wearing his riding gear, her hair a bit tousled during the travel. He knows too well that you don't refuse a summon to Coeris specially from Juturnus so He went as soon as possible. After bowing slughtly to the grog he entered the room, offering Juturnus a broad smile and shaking his hand vigorously.

NIce to see you again Juturnus. He offered him a gaze of complicity as he mentioned his acceptance "I'm sure this is going to be an interesting assignment. I don't know much about the oppidium, I know It's located near a hot spring that seems to have an unusual magical aura and be a vis source. I know that there's going to be mundane nearby because the oppidim has an inn but as you know I was blessed with a gentle gift so that's not really a concern. i've only heard rumors about the incident causing the disappearance of 2 previous magi assigned there. i'm not sure about their names... Some say It's related to potentially dangerous faeries nearby, but I guess If you knew for sure I wouldn't be there..."

He stopped for a moment taking a seat and warming his hands to the fire, " I've never spoken to Laterala personally, I know she's a friend of the prima... He hesitated for a moment before adding "some say she 's not really easy to get along with, I'm surprised she agreed to supervise this particuliar oppidium."

Juturnus gives you a look for a moment as if weighing his options.

Hèviz has a bad reputation. A previous oppidum based there had a magus killed and other, a Tremere, disappear. The Cavern where the magus died has been put in the Book ( The book of Places to Avoid) but I think you may have the... He pauses as if search for a word. collected abilities to clear it out or perhaps harness it. We have not closed the book on Decma ( The missing Tremere) either.

As for Laterala, when your Prima asks you to do something it is hard to say no. I think there are other factors involved. Plans within plans as it were. Of that I am not sure...yet.

Tell me, have you heard any rumors about Poena ?

"The collected abilities... I like the way you put It. He seems amused.

[b]What do you know about the other magi on this oppidium, I've heard some of them come from the Theban tribunal... Can we trust them ? They're usually quite hostile to House Tremere...

Does House Tremere know anything about what lies in the cavern ? Maybe the preliminary notes from Decma ?"[/b]

He suddently looks suspicious as he mentions Poena "Rumors about Poena ? What do you mean, is that a test ? I'm too old for those tricks..."

These times breed strange allies. I really do not trust any outside my own House but Poena and Laterala have something cooked up so I will trust their judgements. As to the magi. You will have a Flambeau Hoplite who is quite uniquely suited to her job. She will be less useful if you face a dragon then if you are hunting down a rogue wizard. There is a Merinita whom the House is watching. When you see him you will understand why. His job is to catalog the Fey in the area. There are two new magi coming which will make your life interesting. One is a Bjornaer who has a Bear as his HeartBeast. The other is quite a skilled hunter from ex Miscellanea. He will be capturing magical and dangerous beasts. He is also a shapeshifter.

He pauses to let that sink in.

We have not had time time explore the cavern due to our recent Mongol problems. We do know that a Guernicus magus with some grogs went in looking for vis sources and did not come out. Our initial follow up found some of one of his grogs. The Redcap who was doing the scouting felt it was better to retreat and report on this and we agreed.

Docma is Tremere. She disappeared with no trace while at the oppidum. The Abyssal Bearer Vexillation may be in contact at some point.

Juturnus smiles at Damasus' outburst.

No need to get excited. I just like to hear what information is moving around the House. There will be a formal announcement soon so i will tell you now. Poena is going to step down as Prima.

"A Bjornaer and a shapeshifter ? This will definitely bring some interesting interactions.." He laughs as he pictures the two magi in his head.[b] "They chose to come to the oppidium knowing the second person would be there so they're probably open minded.. The Hoplite is a good news I guess.

Humm so we don't have much information about the cavern, i guess this is where i come into play... " [/b]He smiles and continues [b] "I'm suppose to outsmart a Guernicus in this investigation, you keep me in high respect I see.

The Abyssal vexillation already ? So you have little hope of finding him alive trapped somewhere ? some of us are persistent you know.

Ho ! you call that a rumor ! I know it's rude to talk about a lady's age but she's like..."[/b] He paused for a moment counting on his fingers " more than 120 year old, that's to be expected sooner or later. I hope she can ease the transition by promoting someone competent and well accepted. Do you have any clues on her plans ? Or should I say would you tell me what you've learn about her plan ? He adds with a cheerful gaze "After all, you're sending me to the worst oppidium of the tribunal I've deserved to be in the loop, aren't i ?"

((small background that Damasus would know or learn easily- The previous Oppidum was there almost 20 years ago. The Mongols invading put this area on hold for the House. That is why the Abyssal Vexillation is looking for a body. Docma is a female))


While I would not say anything if you did wish to investigate Csodabogyós cavern, that is not why I would like you in Hèviz. There are various contenders for Poena's title. I'm sure there will be some shuffling and feelers being put out. For this reason I want you to keep track of the visitors to your Oppidum this year and especially those that come to talk to Laterala.

So i'm suppose to keep track of visitors, that doesn't seems really difficult...Are you expecting anything else from me ?

For now it is enough. We must identify the players in the game before we make a plan. I'm sure Laterala will keep you from being bored.

He pauses for a moment to find a scroll on his desk.

Monica will not want to be Prima. I think Horatius will come forward as a strong candidate. I am more interested in some of the Exarchs form other Tribunals. Allectores From Thebes and Exsupereus from Provencal I expect to get into the game.

ooc : Am i suppose to know who monica is ?

You're interested in them, I see. Do you plan to play the game yourself ?

Monica is in the AtD book as Poena's successor. She would be in a side note in the Coeris section. A combat mage from Ireland.


Juturnus gives you a wry smile.

Of course. You will see visiting your Oppidum in the near future.

"Alright, can I expect anything in return for this..." He pauses for a moment to select a proper word, he had spying in mind but he wasn't sure about Juturnus reaction. "surveillance ? I shouldn't stay in Coeris too long or I might miss the aegis ceremony so is there anything I should expect from Laterala ? And while we're at it, what's the procedure to get into the oppidium, shall I contact the innkeeper ? is there a pass-phrase or any other tricks ? "

You have a good chance to meet the next Primus of the House in the next year as well as other powerful members. I would think that someone of your abilities would find some use in that?

He pauses a moment. His right hand comes up and strokes his chin for several seconds. A sign Damasus knows that Juturnus is considering his words.

What to expect form Laterala? He pauses again. I could tell you things that you have already heard before. She is a hard woman and can be a real pain in the ass at times. You could hear that from anyone if I gave you an hour. But I will turn a question to you. Why do you think I have placed you in Héviz at this time with this assignment for me? What does it tell you?

Well this could mean different things, maybe you don't know what's the prima's plan for Laterala and you need further information to guess. You could on the contrary know the prima's plan but believe that laterala also has its own agenda that is too unpredictable even for you to guess. He pauses for a moment and looks at the dancing flames while considering other options [b]Even if that's less likely this could also mean that you know the mission assigned to Laterala but believe she won't manage to achieve it, or that you judge that she's not trustworthy but i find it hard to believe that a senior Tremere could lack loyalty.

Anyway whatever the option, you expect Laterala to play an important role in the next primus selection and want to supervise It, at least...[/b]

At last you strike upon something. On your journey to Hèviz, consider why I think anyone who would like to become Primus would feel the need to talk to a someone who does not hold a leadership or ... he pauses an official office within our House. But I do think they will come to Hèviz this year.

Now, as to traveling to the Oppidum. Do you know Leap of Home Coming or any variant? We have arcane connections to all of the Oppidums to allow rapid transport to and from. Not as good as Mercere Portals but might be solved in near term as well.

[b]Well I'll think about it...

As to travel, unfortunately I don't know such spells so I usually rely on mundane transportation, as you probably have noticed from my clothes. In fact I find riding quite enjoyable when I'm not forced to ride all day long. So unless you provide me with an enchanted device to cast it I'll have to rely on my riding skill to get there on time.[/b]

If your Horse can go through a Hermes Portal you can take the one here and go to Lycaneon. From there you can take the Mercere Portal to Histria which will put you a week or so away from Hèviz.

"That's convenient, It'll ease the burden of long travelling, can I arrange traveling papers to avoid traveling fees ? What mean of communication do we have ? I can see or hear you using spells If you leave me an arcane connection to a place of your choice but we'll have to set meeting times. Do you know such a spell ? otherwise I can't answer back to you well unless you give me an arcane connection to you, lower your parma and let me use creo mentem but that doesn't seem very likely. "He smiles mischievously at that last sentence.

He waves his hand at the CrMe jest. I'm sure you would do the same for me.

For now, just send me reports via the Redcaps when you see something you think I should know. I do not expect a flood of them all at once but after the spring Tribunal you will get more visitors.

He stands and gets a piece of paper from his desk and writes on it for a moment then puts a seal at the end.

This should handle any fees that you encounter with the Portals past Lycaneon.

He becomes serious once again "Great, If you don't need me anymore, i'll take my leave and try to carry my mission the best I can. I'll also let you know If anything interesting occurs apart from the visits. You really piqued my curiosity with Laterala's role, what kind of knowledge turned her into a "kingmaker? By the way, have you openly suggested me to Laterala ? In that case shall I convey your greetings ?