Chapter 2: Back at the covenant

Polycarpus minds his own business. Tinkering and working his way through testing his newest experiments. Everything is quiet and calm.

Atlas makes his way from his home to Polycarpus’ covenant, having received the location from a Redcap, before leaving his parens’ covenant. With him is a trusted grog, a pack animal and small cart containing some equipment and books his parens was kind enough to leave in his care, and some wine from his family’s stocks. And a white marble horse statue, with hooves still connected to a solid flat base of marble a several inches thick.

Upon his arrival at what he believes to be the correct locatio Atlast cries out, from the back of my his magnificent marble horse, being propelled by his arts[1].“Ho, Covenant of Magi. I seek Polycarpus or another magister of this demesne.” He’s dressed in a leather cloak over wizardly robes, and wears what appears to be a ceremonial knife at his side.

[1] I’m trying to achieve a similar effect to The Stone Palanquin. For the horse to bear me, I judge the magnitude to be 1 degree higher.
ooc: I would ceremonially cast the spell each morning, as long as it takes to travel to the covenant from my family’s home.

Servants who see the strange marble contraption are more than eager to fetch Polycarpus. Polycarpus appers sometime later in laboratory robes. He is soaked in water so either he took a bath with his robe on or perhaps he is experimenting with Aquam magic. As he approach Atlast he speaks. Salve soldae and welcome to our covenant. What is it that you seek traveller?

Atlas dismounts from his sculpture."Brother, I am Atlas ex Tremere. Have the Redcaps not delivered my letter to you? I come to you seeking to join your fellowship. I'm a specialist in the arts of Terram and Rego. Perhaps we can go somewhere more private and discuss items of mutual interest, and if our brothers and sisters are about, perhaps they might join us? Can you direct someone of the turb to assist my footman, Layland, where he can fetter the horse and house the wagon, as it has some equipment and books necessary for my studies.
Layland, bring me the small personal cask of wine when you have settled."

Oh I am sorry, Polycarpus seems to remember, I remember now I read the letter and I was thinking about bringing it up with the rest of my soldaes. I have not gotten around doing that. But I can welcome you here as a guest. Of that I am sure and you can meet with my soldaes later. You know I have been busy working on some experiments lately… Any way I shall not bore you with that. Let’s move on to my area of this covenant. I have a small reception room near my sanctum where we can sit down. Polycarpus gives a few orders to servants to bring something to eat and drink. Polycarpus will escort Atlas to his house. They pass through a gate and into a atrium where Polycapus stops. We can either take a seat here or in the indoors chamber. We can be quite alone here. My servants have their working areas in other buildings this is dedicated to my lab and other needs. Opposing the gate there is a door marked with a sanctum marker. The house is a good quality and well maintained.

Atlas removes his cloak, and grows quite large, towering close to seven feet. And then sits, as if nothing has ocurred.
"This will be more than comfortable. What can you tell me of the covenant? Do you see my skills as being useful? Were I to be admitted to the covenant, what service would be expected of me? I have so many questions, and truthfully, I'm not here soley by my own choice. Iapetus, my parens urged me to broaden my horizions. And, I'm considerably closer to my childhood home.

Polycarpus take his seat opposite Atlas. He draws for breath and seems to be thinking on where to begin. First and fourth most this is a covenant dedicated to freedom. If granted membership you will gain a standard lab, a yearly grant of silver and vis to support you and your servants. The covenant expects you to partake in council meetings and cooperate against common threats. The magi then can trade services between one and other or just take care of their own business. For example if I have a skilled medicus in my staff I can trade some of his services for glassware from one of my soldaes who has a skilled glassblower in his service. We aim for that the covenant should control as little as possible. The only communal services we have are a small staff that takes care of the income giving operations and maintaining the council chamber.

"Perhaps this is why my parens suggested I seek you out. My curse, if you recall my letter, requires a certain amount of, management, for lack of a better word. We tend to require periods of solitude. I am wholly capable of maintaining my abode in such as a manner to contain my beast.”
Atlas pauses to consider, “Polycarpus, I am in need of securing a home for myself. The full moon always comes. While awaiting a council vote, I propose erecting a tower. Should I be denied membership, then I will destroy the tower, unless compensated for vis used. Based on the lack of activity in the covenant, I would guess many of your sodales are away, at least sufficiently many so as to not have a quorum present. Do you have a recommended site for the tower? I see the cliff over there, having a tower near the cliff would camouflage it a bit.
“Further, I have resources at my disposal, being of Tremere, and truthfully, I was offered access to them before I departed. I demurred, pending my acceptance into another covenant, given the risk I would bring to them. If there are certain resources that we are especially deficient in, I can draw on them.”

Polycarpus: You are welcome here as a guest and for me you can set up your tower. Perhaps I am a bit hasty but do you know anything in the art of Animal? It is a complete blank for me…

"Alas, my knowledge is quite limited, not much more than what I gained when my parens opened my Arts. I have more indepth knowledge of Herbam and Corpus."
Atlas pauses considering something, "Where would you recommend I setup the tower? Do you have a map of the environs?"

I can show you a suitable location and then if you have the time I would like that you helped me with a small matter. I think that two heads can think better than one and this is a strange matter. Is there anything else you wish to speak of or shall we? Polycarpus gestures towards the exit of his home. Oh, I forget myself… Of course we wait for something to drink and eat.

I am honored to be of any assistance I can provide. You, of course, are not the first to assume that I know of the Art of Animal, due to my condition. I've been pursuing means of controlling my curse by a focus on retaining control of the human body. Unfortunately, I have not had any success with that method. As Atlas finishes speaking, his footman, Layland, appears carrying a small cask of a personal size. Polycarpus, allow me to give you a small token. This is a cask of fine wine my family grows on their vineyard. It tastes best with a light chill. Atlas takes the cask from Layland, dismissing him, and offers it to Polycarpus.
I can erect the tower in a couple of hours, and a few more to excavate the basement. I have some days before the full moon comes, so constructing the tower need not be immediately. I should enjoy the fellowship of a sodale, something I've had few occasions to experience, and am otherwise at your disposal.

Thank you, Polycarpus takes the cask, I look forward to drinking this. Polycarpus see to that the servants provides with something to eat and then once everyone is satisfied he offers to show Atlas to a site where he can erect his tower. Return to me once you set up your home and we can speak of the strange things happening.

Atlas sends Layland away to retrieve a small chest with the golden eggs in it and begins laying out the site for the tower.
When Layland returns, he lays the eggs out in a pentagram formation along the circumference of the circle, with one egg in the center and one egg in his hand and begins the incantation for the Conjuring the Mystic Tower...
10/0, Check for botch
8, botch die roll required from the stress roll failure
8 +15+2 +3+5 +0=33
ooc: lost two fatigue levels from the casting

After nearly two hours, of incantation, drawing in mystical energies he drops to his knees, smashing the golden egg in his hand against the egg at the perimeter directly in front of him. As the two eggs disappate, energy flies from one egg, clockwise around the printer to each egg, coming back to the original point, at which point all points send energy to the center egg. While this is happening Atlas backs away and watches intently.

The tower abrupts out of the ground, and once risen a large roar emanates from the tower and spread throughout the covenant. What appears to be claw marks from a large bear go down the sides of the tower from top to bottom. The entrance, immediately in front of Atlas has a bear above the doorway, and large arms beckon any who wish to enter, hinting at a bear hug.

“I am too weary, though I successfully created the tower. The experience was far more tiring than I expected. Layland, we shall retire into the tower for the evening, bring the contents of the cart into the house, seeing to my needs, first. After the wagon is unloaded, send Polycarpus my compliments and let him know that the magic was quite taxing, and I will meet with him in the morning.”

Nothing eventful will happen. Polycarpus just make sure that there are something to eat for everyone and let Atlas know that he is welcome whenever he wish.

After a pleasant night of sleep, Atlas seeks out Polycarpus, while Layland unpacks.

Polycarpus welcomes his guest. Welcome again here my guest. Care to take a look on the strange phenomena that I told you about yesterday? I hope that your tower I just what you expected. Did everything go well with the casting? Malfunctioning rituals can be unhealthy… Polycarpus is well aware of his own history in the matter.

"It was most tiring. I felt as if the ritual was slipping out of control, and more of me went into the ritual than I would've expected, based on the air of magic around us. I felt it best to retire for the rest of the day and give you my best effort, such that it is in matters on the Art of Animal. I'm most interested to see what phenomena you've discovered."

Atlas is at his normal size, uncloaked, and has a leather satchel slung across a shoulder, filled with slinging stones. He has brought his cloak with him.

It is not a big deal for us magi but one of our neighbouring sheep farmers has a problem and as we intend to be here for awhile I thought that it would be a good idea to have good relations to our neighbours. The magi walk for about half an hour to get to their destination. During the walk Polycarpus speaks of his experiments without mention either what their ultimate purpose are or exactly what he is researching at the moment. Atlas realises that he is at least dedicated to his cause and skilled in magic theory. Once they approach the sheep farmers house Polycarpus points at a pen. I have asked the farmer to keep the beasts alive so that we could attempt an investigation. I paid him some silver for the service, although he would have been most keen to slay the animal and put the carcass on a bonfire. Atlas soon learn why. In the pen there is a mutton and a lamb. The lamb is distorted and most foul smelling. It’s behind quarter is a that of a snake and the fur is both blacked and tattered. The mutton and the lamb are in different pens. As the magi observe the abomination a man walks out from the house. Polycarpus gestures towards the man and speaks. This is Alexis the owner of these sheep.

A spawn of Typhon, how interesting. Have you done any determination of its vis content?
Turning to Alexis, please to make your acquaintance. How long has this beast been alive? Was it born live, or as an egg which hatched quickly?
While waiting for an answer, I'll observe the actions of both animals. Does the mother sheep appear to be motherly or avoid her offspring? Are they making normal sheep sounds? If ther farmer leaves, or expresses an interest in how we intend to investigatge, I'll proceed. If the lamb seems docile and is close to the edge of the pen, I'll try a spontaneous (spend fatigue) InVi spell to determine if there is any magic essence within the lamb with touch. Otherwise, I'll suggest offering to control the animal with a ReAn spell while Polycarpus does the spell. (1) (7)
14 + 6 + 4=24/2=12 +(Aura/2?) For the InVi spell.

ooc: Question for clarity, mutton is the female sheep/mother?