Ancel of House Bonisagus, magus Trianomae and Seeker

I changed it to a plain old Tractatus, which should fix the problem. :slight_smile: I had originally envisioned it as a summa for his apprentice.

Question about new Virtues and Flaws:

Do we have a method on how to do this from our background? I see nothing in the Character Development Guidelines thread about it. However, over a 40-year-career, I imagine that Ancel has picked some up.

Possible Flaws

  • Enemies (Major): He's probably not been entirely successful in his dealings with exotic magi all the time. Or perhaps some other group/covenant/Tribunal/mundane think that a certain group of hedge wizards belongs to them and dislike some stranger coming in and getting chummy with their hedgies.
  • Exciting Experimentation (MoH p.26): Long exposure and interactions with exotic wizards has given Ancel a flair for the unorthodox. This leads to... interesting results at times.
  • Eichengilde Enmity (GotF p. 20): This minor Flaw represents gild members' displeasure at the thought of a magus who embraces non-Hermetics, learns from them, and tries to bring them in the fold. The fact that he's a Bonisagus just makes it all the more distasteful for archconservatives of the Rhine Tribunal. They almost certainly lobbied the Primus of Bonisagus to not go along with the opening of this school as it breaks tradition.
  • True Friend: The variant of True Love (NPC), except that I recall this is automatic on Bonding a familiar.
  • Infamous: Among conservative members of the Order for his activities with Hermetics, and/or supporting this school

Possible Virtues

  • Social Contacts: Ancel is nearly as social as a Jerbiton, and as well-trained in Hermetic law as a journeyman Quaesitor. His travels have put him in touch with a lot of different groups (though mostly Hermetics and exotic magi). He probably gets along very well with the Pralician branch of House Ex Miscellanea
  • Minor Magical Focus (Exotic Magic): This is simliar to what the Pralicians have. Perhaps they've imparted some of this knack to Ancel?
  • Student of Magic: Long focus on the Magical Realm has given him a real grasp on how it works
  • Secondary Insight (Major): Studying many threads of magic and integrating them into Hermetic magic has given him greater insights into how magic works, resulting in an advanced understanding of the Arts.
  • Famous: Perhaps among Ex Miscellanea and Trianomans


Do we have a method on how to do this from our background? I see nothing in the Character Development Guidelines thread about it. However, over a 40-year-career, I imagine that Ancel has picked some up.

No. If you want a virtue or flaw at saga start, it needs to be part of his base virtue and flaw package. If there's a suitable path through a mystery cult, sure, but that involves some measure of sacrifice. Guild Enmity isn't appropriate for this saga as we aren't in the Rhine. If you want to take flaws over and above the 10 required for 10 virtue points, you're welcome to do so, but you don't get any specific benefit for them. Social contacts can be easily written into the character's back story with names and dates and all kinds of good information to mine. As far as being Famous, there are something like 12-15 Trianomae in 1220, there might be 15-20 now. And it's hard for your character to be more famous than the Prima Bonisagus...

So, one of the last major pieces to finish my background is what I did for those 18 seasons I spent doing Original Research. I was wondering how you wanted to handle this? I wanted to leave the project(s) vague so as not to pick something that wouldn't work for this saga. Given that he was working with hedge wizards for much of his career, an straight-forward approach would be to just go through Hedge Magic and attempt to Integrate something there. Any thoughts?

I honestly wanted to avoid original research during character development. I asked Peregrine_Bjornaer to stay away in the proposed house rules thread, so it was public, if poorly placed. PB's research was a bit more controversial (Permanent Muto) and it would be a Hermetic breakthrough, IMO.

I'd rather have you spend the majority of those OR seasons as XP. Certainly with so many seasons a breakthrough is possible, and it something I'd rather avoid during the development period. I'd like you to trim that number down quite a bit and reallocate those seasons to experience. Also, be specific to the OR breakthrough you'd like, put it up for the entire troupe to decide.

OK, I didn't see it in the other thread as I haven't spent nearly as much time reading through the other magi's builds. I can cull it back to a handful of seasons late in his career, and reallocate the earlier seasons to other stuff.

It wasn't in a character thread, but I didn't relocate it from the proposed HR thread, because I thought it deserved to be discussed. I think I'll rename the thread.

[size=150]Original Research Season Reallocations[/size]

I will be updating these to the main character sheet (post #1 of this thread) rather than the individual decade postings.

Decade 1 - 4 seasons (+40 xp) to reallocate

  • +20 Perdo
  • +10 Magic Theory
  • +10 Finesse

Decade 2 - 6 seasons (+60 xp) to reallocate

  • +15 Artes Liberales
  • +10 Finesse
  • +10 Folk Ken
  • +20 Magic Theory
  • +5 Intellego

Decade 3 - 4 seasons (+40 xp) to reallocate

  • +15 Mastery of Posing the Silent Question (Still Casting, Quiet Casting)
  • +15 Parma Magica
  • +10 Magic Theory

Decade 4 - 4 seasons (+40 xp) to reallocate

  • Bargain +15 xp
  • Magic Lore +15 xp
  • Order of Hermes Lore +10 xp

Remaining To Do:

  • Fuller writeup on background, personality, etc.
  • [strike]Write up the 4 seasons of Original Research from Decade 4 once the research is decided[/strike] -- Removed and replaced with normal XP

I'm calculating Ancel's House Acclaim as part of the remaining details. A few questions about this came up:

  • While there is House Acclaim generated for Art tractatus, it doesn't specifically list any for other arcane subjects, like Magic Theory. In this thread, Richard Love suggests that the House Acclaim chart is not exhaustive, and that any activity that might generate acclaim would generate points. Do you want to go this way for this saga? If so, what would an arcane knowledge generate in terms of Acclaim? For Art tractatus it is (Quality/2) points as a baseline.
  • Training an apprentice is 3 points. Is that just per apprentice, or each season you give the apprentice training? (The latter would seem to generate an unseemly amount of acclaim, but I wanted to check.)

Do you think acclaim is as important for the Trianomae as it is for the Bonisagi?
My hunch is that acclaim for apprentices is per year, to differentiate between the Bonisnatchers and those who find their apprentices the old fashioned way. I'll have to look it over more in depth. For any tractatus on subject a magus would want to read about, Qty/2 is fine. I'm thinking that the computation should exclude skilled professionals a resonances, does that seem reasonable? It doesn't matter to me, too much, just seems odd to give acclaim of 2 points for 3 skilled pros and 1 point of resonances. Of course those could also be exemplary of the resources at his command, so... I dunno. I'm vaccinating.

So, it's listed that Acclaim not as important to Trianomae magi, but that Bonisagi take it seriously, so a saavy Trianoma would use this to his or her advantage when dealing with certain members of the House. Additionally, I was reading through Transforming Mythic Europe and one of the NPCs is a Trianoma magus and they do list his Bonisagus Acclaim among his Reputations which answered (for me at least) that everyone in House Bonisagus generates an Acclaim score, even if only part of the House really use it. I also recall that there are certain uses of Acclaim to throw one's weight around within the House, and that a magus Bonisagi may resis

For the number of points, I can see excluding resonances and such. But what would that be for Ancel? I calculated the Quality of the books straight up on Com + 6 + Good Teacher, as the standard Tractatus formula. What would get excluded in this case? Is part of that +6 in the calculation from resonances and the like?

Ok, the +6 is from the core book, and while I never explicitly stated it, I was working from the expanded rules in covenants. So that +6 in covenants is reduced to +3 and then +1 each from skilled bookbinder, illuminator and scribe. The formula in this case is com +3 + good teacher.
And I wasn't vaccinating, I was vacillating. DYAC.

OK, that sounds good. As he is somewhat of a prolific authour, I don't mind that it's scaled back some. And at the moment, this ruling would only affect Ancel and Elizabeth.

As for vaccinating... well, given the anti-vax crowd lately, I wouldn't be opposed to you vaccinating more people. :slight_smile:

Yeah, although she has her breakthrough. It's known about because of the special Grand Tribunal, but it hasn't been published yet. There's a reason for the lack of publishing, several, but the primary one is that she doesn't have a positive communication score, nor is she a Good Teacher. She is a researcher, not an author. And while she's preparing to write about her discovery and include it in the folio, it's going to be extremely poor. Like a step-by-step guide missing half the steps. :smiley: She expects someone else at the school to write about it better than she did.

Did you enjoy Jenny McCarthy's recent twitter-storm as much as I did?

I don't think there will be any problems finding someone to write it up! Though perhaps as a fellow Bonisagus, Ancel will feel compelled to be the one who does...

Heh, quite. She should've seen it coming.

[size=150]Household Retainers[/size]

These are full write-ups for the two Specialists that Ancel paid for with Build Points. I built them up as grogs using the 15 xp/year standard.

Bertram - Personal Valet, Steward, and Failed Apprentice
Characteristics: Int +2, Per +2, Pre +2, Com +1, Str -2, Sta +0, Dex +1, Qck +1
Size: 0
Age: 40 (b. 1227)
Warping Score: 1 (5)
Virtues and Flaws: Failed Apprentice, Magical Sensitivity, Hermetic Experience; Ability Block (Martial), Warped by Magic, Broken Vessel (Free from Warped by Magic), Proud (Minor)
Personality Traits: Brave +1, Loyal +2, Proud +3
Reputations: None
Abilities: Cambridge Area Lore (personalities) 4, Athletics (running) 1, Awareness (searching) 3, Bargain (household goods) 3, Carouse (staying sober) 2, Charm (first impressions) 2, Concentration (reading) 2, Etiquette (magi) 2, Folk Ken (magi) 2, Intrigue (gossip) 1, Leadership (servants) 1, Speak English (conversational) 5, Order of Hermes Organization Lore (personalities) 2, Cambridge University Organization Lore (academics) 2, Profession Servant (running a household) 8, Profession Scribe (copy) 2, Artes Liberales (arithmetic) 2, Speak Latin (Hermetic) 5, Philosophiae (experimental philosophy) 2, Code of Hermes (exotic magi) 2, Dominion Lore (saints) 1, Faerie Lore (faerie mounds) 1, Magic Lore (exotic traditions) 3, Magic Theory (Vim) 3

Bertram is Ancel's personal valet and overall keeper of his household. He manages the daily needs of organizing meals, household goods and chores that need to be attended to. He has served Ancel nearly the entire time the magus has been in England. Bertram is the unfortunate survivor of an expedition gone horribly awry. At one point, he was an apprentice to a Jerbiton from Schola Pythagoranis who was tasked with dealing with the local fae (Hermetic Experience). The events eventually ended in a conflict and his master suffered from a Twilight episode while casting a spell. The uncontrolled magic entangled poor Bertram and damaged his Gift, leaving him unable to continue his apprenticeship (Failed Apprentice, Warped by Magic).

Dejected by the loss of his abilities, he was noticed by Ancel who took pity on him and offered him a position as his personal assistant. This offered Bertram the opportunity to continue his association with the Order of Hermers, albeit in a different role. He threw himself into the role of servant, figuring that if he could make himself indispensible, he would always have a position. He is proud of his position (Pride) and takes issue with other servants who think otherwise. In this role, he has served well and faithfully and has since discovered that he still has a touch of magic -- finding magical things and areas is easy for him (Magical Sensitivity), though his previous trauma occasionally results in flashback episodes which shake his confidence in his abilities (Broken Vessel).

Bartholomew - Scrivener, former academic
Characteristics: Int +3, Per +0, Pre +1, Com +1, Str -1, Sta +0, Dex +0, Qck +0
Size: 0
Age: 30 (b. 1237)
Warping Score: 0 (0)
Virtues and Flaws: Clerk (Acolyte), Baccalaureus, Privileged Upbringing; Pious (Minor), Failed Student, Lame
Personality Traits: Brave +0, Loyal +1, Pious +3
Reputations: Failed Student (Cambridge University) 2, Skilled scribe (Academic Reputation) 1
Abilities: Bargain (services) 3, Charm (being witty) 2, Concentration (reading) 2, Etiquette (academics) 2, Folk Ken (academics) 2, Guile (elaborate lies) 2, Speak English (academic) 5, Church Organization Lore (history) 3, Cambridge University Organization Lore (personalities) 3, Order of Hermes Organization Lore (personalities) 2, Profession Scribe (copy) 7, Teaching (undergrads) 2, Artes Liberales (grammar) 3, Civil and Canon Law (Cambridgeshire law) 3, Common Law (Cambridgeshire law) 2, Speak Latin (academic) 5, Philosophiae (moral philosophy) 3, Theology (history) 2

Bartholomew is an Englishman, one of many sons of a prosperous merchant family. With a hale family, he was not expected to inherit much of the family business. When his father was in discussions with a local bishop, Bartholomew's natural intellect shone through. This impressed the Bishop enough to take the boy as a ward and put him through a solid education. The Bishop's influence enhanced his natural piety, and he entered into the Church's minor orders, where he eventually rose to the position of Acolyte.

In time, Thomas was enrolled at the University of Cambridge where he earned his Baccalaureus. He continued his studies to become a Magister in Artibus. Shortly before he could take his final examinations, a series of disasters took place: he had an accident that crippled his legs, his patron Bishop suddenly passed away, and a jealous academic rival conducted a successful smear campaign during Thomas' recovery period during which he was unable to counter the rumours. After his recovery, it became clear that few University masters wanted anything to do with him. He reluctantly left his studies with his reputation battered when his resources to continue his studies dried up due to the Bishop's death. (His family had long since left him to his fate.)

With his contacts, Ancel had heard of this academic's downfall from the grapevine. With a little prying, he also learned about Bartholomew's true history. Given his own increasing writing load and the occasional lectures that Ancel was giving as a 'guest scholar' at Schola Pythagoranis, he offered Bartolomew a position as his personal scribe. In this role, Bartholomew was able to excel in, even if he still yearned to complete his Magister in Artibus training. But without the resources (and now the ability) to leave Cambridge on his own, he resigned himself to becoming the personal scrivener to the foreign scholar. In time, he learned about the Order of Hermes and the facade that Schola Pythagoranis put up to hide amidst the mundane scholars. He was also pleased to find that his new master encouraged scholastic pursuits, even if the magus' pursuit of knowledge had a decidedly exotic bent to it.

Character Sheet Updates (see first post in this thread)

  • Added specialization for Language: German to 'Conversational' (didn't have one set)
  • Updated specialization for Artes Liberales to 'Rhetoric' (was set to 'Ritual Magic', but he don't have any Ritual spells)
  • Removed Fostered Apprentice (apparently this is a Bonisagi-lineage practice, not so much a Trianomae-lineage one, unless you have a story idea already for it)
  • Added Exciting Experimentation (MoH p.26) (years of dealing with exotic magi adds excitement when pushing the limits of magic in the lab)

I'm thinking that fostering is not nearly so restrictive, and happens among other Houses, and situations where it seems appropriate.
So, if you want fostering to be part of the back story, you can, and you don't have to take the virtue. Fostered Apprentice is almost like Hermetic Patron as a story flaw, you get some small benefit in exchange for some expectation that your mentor might ask something of you.

Story flaws, in my view, are you way of telling me that these should be used to color the stories you tell about your character in this saga.

All right, I've changed it back to Fostered Apprentice. I have some ideas that could fit in well. Perhaps the other magus is a research-oriented Bonisagus, which would go far in explaining Ancel's facility with Magic Theory and work in the lab. I'm thinking that his parens and foster-parens thought that having both sides of the House exchanged would make for a richer experience and offer a better appreciation for the House's tradition.

Shall I sketch out the three characters (Ancel's parens, his foster-parens, and foster-brother/sister)? Given that the Flaw is on his character sheets, he clearly still keeps in touch with all three to the point that they influence him with stories. He'd know about their political and magical leanings -- and they'd like be the first magi he'd go to with this idea for a school to get additional votes.