Do you want to have Woad join this story or do you want to give it a pass?
I would very much like to join
Okay, we'll push this story back until a little bit later in 1244 so that Woad can join. When does he officially arrive at Andorra?
I initially assumed he'd just arrive in time for when the story was planned. He is a brand new character, and can alter his past to fit the present.
Right now Mark is running a thread about introducing the Woad. Roberto is in Hibernia meeting the Woad and giving him a ride back to Andorra. But I'm unsure how this fits with the timeline of Roberto and the others in Andorra. Mark should be able to shed light on that.
It looks like Woad arrives sometime in 1244. I had planned Ancient Discovery to be Winter 1244 (the start of 1244 in this saga - we go Winter-Spring-Summer-Autumn for our records). I can't tell from your intro story which season it's in, but we can move Ancient Discovery to the next season to accommodate. No doubt the logistics of getting the large group together delayed things.
Marko, when will Woad be settled in?
I did not specify a season because it is supposed to just be some intro roleplaying that does not impact the timetable. And I messed up my own calendar. LoL. This will be early Winter 1244 when he arrives, so the timing is not an issue.
Now that I'm back (yay!) I'd definitely like to participate. I'd like one of my magi to go, and I think Solomon is probably the most appropriate considering his skills and magical aptitude, and I think Acutus would feel a bit like a fish out of water in the desert.
Selim (my Arabian companion) would probably be quite helpful, seeing as how he has Faerie Speech, Ways of the Desert, and is of Jann blood. Oh, and he can speak with animals with a specialty in camels
I suspected that Selim would be coming along.
So I may need to rethink this. Relooking at the very beginning of this thread, it looks like my plan had been to bring Acutus along, and considering we're talking North Africa, that's not too terribly far from the sea. And he is much more of an adventurer than Solomon.
Pick whichever character you think will fit best. But I can tell you that aside from a brief trip by ship to North Africa, there will be no significant bodies of water. There will be action and adventure (good for Acutus) and knowledge and history (good for Solomon). It's ultimately your call.
It's early December in Arans and a group of magi and companions are gathered in the north solar in the main keep. Standing in the middle of the gathered adventurers and scholars is an apparently young maga with long dark hair behind a white veil and a deep blue dress over a golden kirtle. She points down at a map of the Mediterranean and continues speaking.
"I have a ship chartered to leave from Parma in three week's time," she says, pointing to the island of Majorca on the map. "Roberto informs me that you can all get to Majorca with little trouble." She gives a nod to the Flambeau magus. "From there we'll sail to Algiers where I have arranged for a herd of camels and travelling supplies to be ready. One of the founders of the True Cross covenant in the Levant owed me a favor and I convinced him to use some of his merchant contacts to arrange everything. I've also researched a spell that will calm a beast down enough that it will suffer a Gifted rider, though the spell also tends to dull the creature's initiative. I don't recommend doing anything fancy while mounted. Any significant shock on the part of the animal might break the enchantment, leaving you riding a spooked camel - not advisable. I understand that we have some other - more unorthodox - options for travel. But we'd be wise to save those for when we're away from populated areas. We don't want to draw too much attention to ourselves if we can help it."
"My contacts have also arranged for several local guides to be avaialable in Algiers, though I'm of two minds as to whether to take them with us. They know the land better than any of us, as well as the language and the customs. So they'd be of immense help. For my part, I speak the Arabic language. But my knowledge of their culture is sadly lacking. And as Christians in a Muslim land, we'll be outsiders. Add to that the presence of several magi and the associated effect of the Gift and we could be in significant danger from the locals. Even with magic to defend ourselves it would be a distraction and a danger we would do well to avoid if we can. But, on the other hand, having anyone that we don't know involved in this expedition could add to the danger of treachery. And our guides would feel the effects of the Gift as well, making them mistrust many of us. Would that be enough to betray us? I can't say."
"Now, I know we have Roberto and Lucas with a Gentle Gift, which will help. And we have Selim and Cecilia who can talk to the locals. I also understand we'll have more than a few soldiers and servants along. So we will be a formibable force. But aside from Selim, I haven't seen anyone that could even charitably be called a local - though with magic some could appear as such. That means we'll be at a disadvantage in populated areas and should be ready for trouble."
"I have the maps I've prepared from my research," she adds. "And our destination is within caravan distance from Algiers - I'll say no more at the moment. But we can expect a fair bit of travel over land that may be hostile both physically and culturally. Add to that the danger that Darius has not forgotten about me and my research and likely has his agents pursuing me. That means that there is a near certainty that we'll run into trouble at some point."
"Now, we still have a few weeks to plan," The Bonisagus maga concludes. "So, I welcome your thoughts on the matter. How do you think we might better prepare for the coming expedition?"
OOC: Here's a chance for a final list of participants in the expedition (magi, companions, and grogs) and a chance for people to offer advice for planning the expedition.
OOC: I would be willing to participate taking over a grog from the covenant. You tell me which one.
The Woad joins the expedition as soon as he arrives with Roberto. Which should be soon.
He may or may not go before the elder magi to seek membership before leaving for Africa, depending on how much of a rush we’re in
How abut we have just arrived? that works for me
I was figuring on arranging the start of the adventure just after The Woad finished getting his ducks in a row with the covenant.
The Woad just arrived with Roberto then.
Does this go on another thread?
BTW it’s well past midnight in Denmark.
Happy New Year
"How do the locals feel about snakes? Semsuhfaw and I can travel as snakes, that might mitigate some of the effects of the Gift, since they won't think twice about being nervous around a couple of snakes."
Guiverna smiles. "Plus, the men would be less likely to notice that I'm watching them undress that way."
Can we make that part of this thread? Trial by Fire so to speak. It will cut down on the time it takes to get going and saves me from creating a new thread.
OOC: Sure. No problem.
It's not long after moon rise when Roberto alights his carpet on one of the balconies in the main keep in Arans castle, ending his and The Woad's long journey from Hibernia. As the two magi step off the carpet and Roberto moves to roll it up, a falcon lands on the balcony next to them. A moment later it shimmers and it it's place is a fair-haired man in what could easily be the dress of a prosperous merchant. Despite not wearing a cloak, he doesn't seem bothered by the December chill in the air.
"Cutting things a little bit close, aren't you, Roberto?" he offers. "Flavia just arrived yesterday and we'll be making the final arrangements for departure tomorrow." He steps forward and offers Roberto his hand. "It's good to have you back. I trust your mission was successful."
Once their greeting is finished the man looks over at the newcomer and offers his hand to him as well. "I'm Lucas de Mercere," he says with a welcoming look, "Herald for the covenant. Welcome to Andorra. I'm assuming you're The Woad. It's a pleasure to finally meet you."
Lucas glances over his shoulder at Roberto. "Horus was out doing some late night hunting with Sophia - she prefers to hunt at night - and he caught sight of you. If it hadn't been for his warning, you'd have managed to slip in unannounced."
"Then again," he adds with a smile, "I don't doubt that the Spider has already seen you, alerted the guards, and prepared for an aerial invasion before she could confirm it was you. She's very careful about these things. I'm glad she's on our side."
"I have Horus going to wake some servants to get you something hot to eat and to prepare a room for our guest." He moves over and opens the door to the keep and steps inside. "I'm sure you're both hungry after your journey."
"And I wasn't kidding about the expedition, Roberto," Lucas concludes. "If you'd been a few days later we'd have had to leave for Majorca without you and trust that you'd catch up. We received word that the ship with the grogs and the supplies arrived in Parma yesterday. And the ship to Africa will be ready to depart on Thursday."