You have been on the road for two days, spending the first night at the little hamlet of Guèrance in a peasant house evacuated for the night by its greedy but scared inhabitants seeking refuge with their neighbors in the other house. The weather has been pleasant,and it is past mid-afternoon but the clouds look like cauliflower today, and one of your grogs clicks his tongue in disapproval as he mutters about an upcoming thunderstorm. You rumble into another nameless little village. People call their children to them as you approach. Some spit into the dust as you pass when they believe you can't se eit. Doors are closed. Nothing unusual.
Then half a dozen of dirty children from aged about 5 to 9 emerge from behind a house, throwing stones at you as your carts pass by.
Protecting himself from the stones with his plain cloak at first, Cornelius is slow to react. But after a moment or two of thought, he moves closer to the grogs, instructing them in Occitan loudly enough for the children to hear.
"Bertol! Mauvert! They are throwing stones at your masters! Chase them away!"
Less loudly he adds, touching each grog to be sure they understand, "No killing."
(OOC: One of the others may very well react faster than Cornelius, since his Qik is -3.)
(OOC 2: Cornelius may pass off as a servant, so he is kind off playing the part.)
It was a gorgeous day for travel: the provincial countryside was, as usual, it's sublime spring self; the birds were chirping, the sun was shining, and the natives were only using their most ineffective warriors to assault them.
"Stone," St. Avery muttered, flinching as a moderately-sized projectile thudded off the side of the cart. "Terram, multiple instances; necessitates a personal, broadly defensive warding technique. Trivial."
"Well, yes," Emily replied, moving to stand between him and the local hooligans. "We could do that. Or we could just yell at them." Then she raised her walking staff, shouted in heavily-accented Occitan. "You lot! Stop that!"
St. Avery brought up his own staff, and poked at one of the rocks, squishing it slightly into the ground. "Strange. Usually they don't do that until I start talking."
"Perhaps they've met magi before?"
"Usually results in running and screaming. Not sacrificing their young." He frowned. "Distraction technique to cover their escape, maybe?"
"...Probably just poor upbringing."
"Ah. Blame it on them being French?"
Emily nodded. "Sounds sensible."
St. Avery thought that he may be using that excuse rather a lot, over the next week.
Elizabeth is wearing sturdy travel clothes, which would be utterly unremarkable except there almost men's clothes. Tailored to fit her of course, but certainly not typical wear for a woman.
At the first signs of the rocks flying, well after one almost hits her, Elizabeth does her best to get behind a cart. "Rocks! Rocks are the worst! Especially when they come from slings. But even when little kids throw them they're uncalled for. Why can't people stick to nice arrows?" This is in Latin "I will say these kids are terminally brave."
Bertol and Mauvert quickly react to the threat. The children yell with a mixture of horror and glee as they dash away. The ambush never comes.
There are two minor incidents, one with a village drunk and the other one about finding a place to sleep without having to pay too steep a price, but the magi's avoidance of heavy-handed responses pays off and both situations are resolved speedily.
Three days away from your destination, you run into the following scene:
You are riding your carts through a small forest when you come to a clearing in the late afternoon. There are eight men, wearing armor and spears. They have surrounded a couple that had been resting and their warhorse. He has expensive armor but is only wearing part of it whereas she is dressed like someone from a nunnery. He has gripped his sword and shield and looks a competent fighter. She is on the floor crying.
(ooc: don't ask for more information. If you do, I will give it to you, but your character will lose the first round, because the others won't necessarily wait until you have assessed what is going on. If you don't you get to act before they do)
Cornelius hesitates, taken aback by the apparent situation. This is not something his training as an investigator has prepared him for; nor does his magic easily allows him to intervene. He looks at his sodales, ready to follow their lead.
St. Avery had been slumping alongside the cart, talking eruditely on a number of diverse topics with himself, when he ran into the back of his sister.
"Oh, are we there...oh."
"...so, nothing to do with us." He turned to Emily. "Em, can you ask them how long this is going to take? Or if we can scooch on through the side?"
"Yes," she murmured, "I'll get right on that. Right after I decrease my intelligence to that of a head of lettuce."
"Why would you do that? Dryads rarely have anything...right. Sarcasm." Not bandits - probably a local political squabble; someone taking someone's daughter to a nunnery. He was tempted to simply yell out and ask, but he doubted it would be that simple. People waving weapons around were rarely forthcoming with clarifying details, despite his continued hope. Or maybe someone trying to ESCAPE from a nunnery. Suitably dramatic. Cathars? Maybe. Liklihood of anyone involved being in the Order? Low. Liklihood of Fey or Infernal involvement? Also low, but slightly higher.
That being said, he wasn't completely heartless; but neither was he (despite his sister's insinuations) particularly stupid or unobservant. Likelihood of figuring out a just response in the next five seconds that doesn't' involved mind control? Also low. So, instead, he decided to let those more suited than he to take a speaking role. But he prepared, just in case.
[OOC: Div/5 spont, -quiet; Intangible Tunnel; base effect lvl 10, +3 Sight, +1 diam; final effect lvl 5; Casting Score = Re + Vi + Sta + Aura(0?) - 10 = 17+17+2-10 = 26; score/5 = 5]
Clovis is whispering "I can make the whole warrior group sleep if the woman stops to cry and then make the other two forget we were there, but maybe we could just speak first I don't speak occitan yet so ..."
The magi hesitate and talk at the same time, except for St. Avery who keeps his cool and casts a spell.
The young woman notices you first and cries out: "Help! Whoever you are! Help us! Pleeeeease "
This exclamation kind of distracts the others and a few turn their heads to look, including the man with whom St. Avery has just linked up. The lone figther sees an opening when he turns his neck and slashes the man's neck. A fountain of red erupts like a geysir, once, twice , three times, as he gurgles and turns around once, spraying all the fighters and the woman with his blood , before collapsing and twitching twice.
One of the spearman is clever enough not to get himself distracted and stabs his spear into the lower leg of the swordsman, who - surprisingly - doesn't fall.
ooc: The aura is divine 1. Kevin, feel free to roleplay how it feels to have an arcane connection that goes from man to body. And since his blood is on all of them now, you have a connection to them all (the spearman, the sworrdsman and the woman).
Since you had more time to look, you realize that the swordsman is an excellent fighter, and that his opponents are not robbers, but hired men (they know how to fight and their clothes are not rugged enough for outlaws, but their equipment is not good enough to be real noblemen).
"Well I suppose a bunch of mundanes are going to die regardless of what we do, it may as well be the less friendly looking ones"
And Bastion will cast Pilum of Fire on one of the not-friendly looking people, I'll also shout and my gestures for a +2 bonus to offset the aura penalty a little, for roleplay reasons I do it to look slightly and sound slightly more intimidating to the group of armed thugs.
"Wait, those guys with spears aren't a threat at all!" Elizabeth says stepping forward and casting Call to Slumber, using normal gestures and movements. Targeting one of the healthy spear holders. 1 I assumed it was a stress roll. 6*2+7(Re)+5(Me)+1(Sta)-3(Aura)
Technically speaking, a corpse is still a person. Oh, sure, there’s a bit lacking on the ineffable side of things. But where one person may see a Limit, Bonisagus saw opportunity. So, to the delight of necromancers throughout the ages, the Hermetic response to one’s key target dying in a group is “meh; I can still get ‘em.”
Or at least, that’s what St. Avery was trying to tell himself when the gentle touch of the Grim Reaper caressed its way through his arcane tunnel. What he was telling the rest of the group was more prosaic.
“WHAT THE HE-”
The Gernicus was in front, with what looked to be a face frozen with shock. I’m doomed. We’re all doomed. We just attacked a group of mundanes in front of the Law. Well, only if they're not bandits or hired mercenaries or something; really, Hermetic Law is all about how much it actually affects the Order. Except for demons.
So instead, he drew up however much authority his white cassock and hefty stick gave him, and in a loud, commanding voice that only slightly cracked, yelled “WILL EVERYONE JUST STOP IT!!!”
(Div/2 spont cast ReCo Base 2 effect “loose control of leg”, +1 Touch, +2 Group, +1 Diameter; ReCo + Sta + Exaggerated Words/Gestures + Aura +roll = (17+0+2+2-3 +:7)/2 = 25/2 = 10; cast through the Arcane Tunnel.)
Then he turned to Corvis. “Um...that sleep effect might be nice." He glanced over. "Except for the burning one. He’s probably going to wake up." He considered the field. "And the dead one. Neither of them probably need it.”
Then he paused for a moment. "Or the knight."
Finally, "Probably wouldn't hurt on the woman, though."
Cornelius is somewhat taken aback by how fast the events are going. He isn't a warrior nor a combat magus, so there is very little he can do to affect this type of situation. He decides to take a few steps back, moving slightly behind and to the side of their carts, to avoid getting trampled in case their donkeys get frightened by the eruption of blood and fire. Then he observes the situations, as well as their surroundings.
One of the spearman is set aflame. He screams wildly. Another one leans on his spear, and falls asleep (though not for long probably - with a ll the noise around). Then the holding effect kicks in and the fighters realize in horror that there legs do not follow their commands anymore. This, combined with the fire spell, finally gets everyone's attention (except for the poor sod who is unable to roll on the ground to extinguish his burning clothes and hair). They lower their weapons and it seems they are now willing to listen to reason (?).
"This is why you shouldn't attack nuns!" Elizabeth says, in Latin, as she shakes her fist at the spearmen. "Leave before anything else bad happens. Can you even understand me? Can someone tell them to get lost for me? The evil spearmen."