Anulus Connectens: Magi of Hermes Covenant

I wanted to do another Magi of Hermes style character write up. As I posted earlier.

When I mentioned this, Tellus, Darkwing, and Christian Andersen wrote that they'd like to do characters from the same covenant in conjunction so that the characters could play off of one another and be a bit more reflective of actual play.

The characters are going to be made per the standard after apprenticeship advancement rules on pages 32 and 33. We'll be doing all of our lab work in detail avoiding the 30 spell levels per year.

This is the thread where we're going to talk about the covenant and how the characters interact.

And here is the link to the thread about the character that I am developing

Here's Christian's

Here's Tellus'

Here's Darkwing's

Here's ROF's

The setting for covenant and tribunal is deliberately kept vague in an attempt to keep it as useful as possible.

The concept is a new spring covenant sponsored by powerful backers in order to fulfill a need for a covenant in a previously unsettled area on the border between two tribunals. Not only will this covenant take control of wild lands and act as a minor Mercer House to link the two tribunal's Redcap networks. For this service the older and wealthy covenants invest books, silver, and vis so the young magi can devote their time to such exploits rather than scrape a living off bare rock.

Janus of Mercere has been selected to take charge of the Mercer House angle (link will follow)

To explain a little of the vagueness: we may or may not develop extra spells to enrich the covenant or gather vis during development, by being a covenant with backers this allows us to hold off on this until the magi are little more experienced. As the concepts include a Mercere and mine will have some nautical spells, being in a border area not too far from the sea allows us to explore these themes without getting bogged down in setting-specific details.

The covenant is named "Anulus Connectens" due to the role of linking two tribunals and intended as a nexus for Redcaps. Symbol is two links in a chain, inside a star (to symbolise the links shining).

So the basic necessities of the covenant requires little work for our resident magi, but by and by improvements and optimized facilities due to spells and devices are intended. These are some of the things we intend to focus on in order to showcase new spell and device effects.

Physical location and setup:
I envision an area of wooded hills, with Anulus Conenctens placed in a valley, next to a river. To begin with magically assisted craftsmen build relatively simple stone buildings with slate rooves, longer than they are wide and placed at right angles to one another in order to form enclosed courtyards as additional wings spring up. The intent for Janus of Mercere is to develop T: Structure effects, taking advantage of en enclosed yard being equivalent to a room in order to also affect the outside spaces. The entire complex is meticulously designed to have a continuous roof.

The idea of doing this as a group is to see interactions.

I notice that Bausas has affinity in both Creo and Corpus along with puissant Corpus. Is trading favors for a longevity ritual in the cards for the him? I imagine every one of the magi will want one ere long and I suspect that living in the same covenant Bausas' skill in creo and corpus won't go unnoticed so it seems reasonable that the issue would come up. Would there be things (such as enchanted devices for his laboratory or otherwise) that he would desire that would be within the abilities of the other magi?

It was not something I was considering when I chose those Arts, but he certainly wouldn't object to doing so.

Absolutely! Thank you for asking!

Certainly, but I don't really have a list yet. Requests will be made along the way.

Bausus might also be amenable to assisting someone else in the lab, provided he was added to the Sanctum Marker, and probably provided some favour in return. He would see this as a way of learning from other magi, and remind himself to be humble.

Andreva is developing spells to make a rock quarry. Does that work with everyone else? Does anyone want to contribute? Can we use the redcap network to find buyers or will it involve hiring covenfolk?

That certainly works for Bausas - as long as he doesn't have to work there (Clumsy Magic).

Are there other people involved? (Workers, etc). At the moment, I don't think Bausas will involve himself, unless asked.

In terms of finding buyers - my character will be building a small fleet, so will hire people to crew a ship and start trading so I should have that covered.

In terms of money - I'm torn between developing wine-based Aquam (as Aquam works well for a nautical character) or also doing a bit of Terram.

I just looked that up and saw that at least wikipedia talks about a period trade in wine being shipped long distances as all christian 's needed it for communion but not all places grew grapes. I was initially skeptical because I had previously understood that medieval wine was a much more transient thing than modern wine that typically wasn't bottled and allowed to rest for years but instead consumed when "ready" from casks.

Terram is of course exceedingly useful for making a profit. Please look at Andreva's spells, although it could make sense either to do something quite different so the characters aren't repeating effort or do something very similar so that they can exchange lab texts, finesse tractatus and the like, if you are looking at developing things post apprenticeship it doesn't make as much sense to develop the characters without reference to one another.

I'll push ahead with the quarry spells. It strikes me as unlikely that you'd want to fill ships full of stone, I could be wrong but I imagine that the amount of stone required to reach a profit might be larger than the amount required to sink the ship. Three minutes of Google haven't enlightened me on the answer. Are river boats are an option?

Janus made 3 devices - as the first actions post Gauntlet - related to this, to use in constructing the covenant buildings: Stonecutting Knife from Covenants to cut out blocks of stone. Glove of Lifting which can move the blocks around. Plus Chisel of Mallaeble Stone which can meld together the blocks once they are in place. All with unlimited uses per day. I assume one or more workers trained in Finesse helps proper stonemasons with the project.

Is this any help?

I see a great synergy with the Redcaps being used to help selling the goods. I think a device temporarily lessening the weight of the stone blocks as useful for easier transport by wagons...But if Janus needs to do this it won't be within the first 15 years since he is about done here.

I remember being caught out by the Finesse in The Stonecutting knife, as Finesse is an arcane ability. I think that knife is the only example of an item using finesse. I'll try and find the post where someone pointed this out to me...


[Edit] It was here:
[url]], on a general discussion on finesse. i'm still not sure if a grog ussing the knife could get exposure XP in finesse without having some teaching to 'kick-start' the process.


The Stonecutting Knife may very well be the only example of a device using Finesse, however the process it employs is essentially Craft Magic of which Covenants has several examples of spells using.
I agree that initial training in Finesse is not only a good idea maybe even necessary. After the initial annoyance one may have because of the 3 higher EF needed for Craft magic when compared to mundane work one needs to remember that said grog trained in Finesse can now use many different devices in order to magically do mundane work in less time.
I have plans for Janus to shift some of his focus towards Craft magic with animal products...More to come as Janus is advanced to +30 years!

Oh wow, yes it is helpful. Did you see the spells that Andreva made at the end of page 2 and beginning of page 3?
They do similar things. With your tools and some trained masons he whole operation becomes much more believable than Andreva coming down to the quarry one saturday every month and casting a few hundred spells and then....something magically turns the stones into money. This way we have a staff and they can work, in fact even work with supernatural efficiency, even in her absence.

Andreva could craft a lesser enchanted device for transport. She has some un-dedicated seasons left in her first 15 year period.

I looked at creating a device to shrink the stone blocks but that turned out to be just a bit much for a lesser device. Andreva could pull it off but not with enough uses per day to be worthwhile, (Ok she could go triple overtime plus experimentation or some such scheme and get exactly what I imagine the merchants would desire but that hardly qualifies as living a beautiful life - living beautiful life being a part of the Jerbiton philosophy that she buys in to.)

She will however make a device that takes large loads of stone and gives them the density of wood so they'll be easier to move and, if necessary, they'll float. I think that that would be sufficient to give our stone industry life.

Since it's a non-violent purpose (as far as he cn tell anyway), Bausas might be persuadable to assist her in the lab, if +8 makes a difference.

We'll see how the rest of the 15 year period shakes out. At the moment I'm thinking that I've already written up the item that lightens the rocks so I'll keep it. I don't think that we'll need them both. I've left four seasons for Andreva only tentatively scheduled so it might be something possible, but Andrevea is going to put her primary lobbying effort behind some sort of an arrangement where Bausas makes her a longevity ritual. She wants to secure that first even if it takes several seasons of her time.

Also I haven't really seen what the other characters are up to I want her to have a few seasons open to support their work. Andreva is already making use of Janus' masonry items and covenant environment magics and very possibly Darkwing's character's ships. Granted, creating money for the covenant is a goal for all of the characters, but at the moment I see more of the benefit flowing to Andreva than from her.

We haven't seen Darkwing's character yet but it occurs to me that as of yet no one knows Aegis of the Hearth. I can imagine getting by with a casting tablet for now but I'd rather see someone learn it. Andreva is strong with Rego but week with vim during the first 15 year period. I could set her towards being a formidable caster of the spell during the next 15 years or is rego vim more of some one else's thing?

I was thinking about that a few days ago as well.
Bausas will be decent at Vim and not horrible at Rego, but is really more Cr/Co focussed.