Chapter 6: Rendez-Vous at Salmon River (Autumn 1013)

The two groups arrive at similar times to the site identified by Janus. It is easy to find once you find the right river. A small hill surrounded by the river on three sides. The forest encrouches on the third side. The hill, or area in the river bend, is about fifty paces across. Quite nice for a castle, but a little small for a covenant with many magi who want a lot of space.

The riverbed is full of big stones, forming small and big pools of calm water, and narrow passages with strong currents. On the upstream side, it is particularly deep. Somewhere here, the Salmon of Virtue is rumoured to live. Somebody will probably assess the aura and find that it level four, covering the river bend and the hill.

Betula and her compatriots arrive at the bend of the river. Reviewing her notes she says, "I think this must be where we are to meet the others." Wearily heading to the top of the hill she unloads what she is carrying and surveys the area from its pinnacle. Slowly turning as she examines the terrain. When she has committed the layout to memory she begins casting [Taste the Strength of the Font of Magical Power Base 2, Personal, Concentration+, Taste, InVi 3+ 15/2 = 7.5 Success Moon Duration]. After casting her spell she attempts to find the edges of the aura, wandering down to the water's edge and the forest on the fourth side. "The aura here is not as strong as at Ungulus, similar to the regio of the baths and Castellum Veridian. It extends into the water, I am unsure if it extends to the other shore but if a magical beast swims the waters it likely covers most of the river as well." Turning to the spirit that has accompanied them from its puddle, "Perhaps this river would be a better home for you."

A vulture flies into view from high above. "Betula! It's been a while, sister." She lands on one of the hill's trees. "Glad to see you safe and sound. Our group will arrive shortly."

"It is a pleasure to see you again and that you are alright. I guess that our tales can wait until we are all assembled but did you find what you were looking for?"

"We were able to save a redcap and we found an intact underground lab at Wicker Hill. The other magi and redcap seem to be dead, one is missing."

Thom looks up from where he has been resting, a smile warming his face from the strain it’s been under the past weeks.

“Hey sodales. It is good to see you! Is everyone else hale and well?”

"Hello Thom!" The vulture waves a wing, and then greets the companions as they are coming into sight. "And just who is this newcomer?" @Lothindil
"No significant wounds on our side. Are you well?" she asks, as the northern group arrives.

Thom winces, smile returning though as he touches his side gently.

"I got in a tussle with a water elemental in those Roman baths. Or was it a spirit? Not really sure. Fascinating place though. If we could get its denizens under control, it would be a very pleasant place to call home. Much better than the Wall regio, I can tell you. But not the way it stands now with its confused guardian spirits."

He looks over to Sionag with a nod, growing silent again.

Janus looks at Thom “What sort of elementals, where they solid, did they do you physical damage? Please tell me more”

"At least one of the beings we encountered was a water elemental, it physically battered Thomas. It seemed a place of water and fire, hot baths and steam, though we met other spirits there. A water spirit we found in a small pool in the forest helped us with the prayer needed to enter and it joined us here as we told it we could find a more magical place for it to reside. though it might prefer to go home to the Baths." Betula explains knowing Thomas is quite damaged.

“Did you have any luck in damaging or defeating the creatures Maga?”

"No. We ran. Neither of us are skilled with Aquam and we had no warriors with us at the time... and even that might have been unhelpful as it was a being of pure water."

At least, we finally join the meeting point, and other part of our, their group... Theorically their group, but after this journey, I would be a part of this group, right ? Lost in these reflexions, Sionag escapes all bases of etiquette, like say hello or present herself. She takes a time to understand that someone asks her something.

"Ah, euh... Yes. I'm."

No, definitively, they would like have more informations that, yes, I'm the new maga on the party...

"Sionag filia pharmacopoeian. I've helped him with the wound caused by the elemental. And you are ?"

“Janus of Flambau, I have been fighting the Diedne on these islands since the start of the war.”

Thadeus, who'd been trailing the group of magi, approaches just as Sionag introduces herself, a small but colorful lizard-like creature on his shoulder. "Ah! A pharmacopean! I've heard good things of your tradition, Sionag. Very nice to meet you!"

"I'm Thadeus of the lineage of Pralix, a fellow member of House Ex Miscellanea. I came back to the island a few months ago. Spent the last few years in Pomerania with my pater."

Turning to Thom and Betula, "Well met, sodales. So you found several good sites for a covenant, yes? We'll have to discuss that later in more details. For now, what's the plan? Do we set up camp here and spend a few days investigating this site? The weather has been mixed in the last few days, so it would be good to have some form a shelter against the wind."

Those who are perceptive may notice that of the group, only Hamish and the pack animals seem to be wet from the rain. On the back of the animals, rain drops are flowing down without soaking the crates and bags.

By this point, Hamish’s hair and beard are a wild briar thicket flaring about his head like a red halo. He seems indifferent to the incessant wet of late autumn as he sets about getting some semblance of order together with the weary pack animals and sets Jack to looking for fire wood.

By way of greeting, the tall soldier nods to Thom with respect, perhaps impressed that the flighty magus took a wound in combat.

He smiles a silent greeting to Betula, though his eyes wander down her comely body to settle for a moment on her mid section… curious.

“Hamish MacDuff, milady,” he says to Sionag. “What’s a farmer-cooper-pagan? Never heard of those.”

Sionag might notice that the big fellow seems entirely unphased by the magi and their gifts.

The "little friend" of Thadeus, hearing peaceful discussion, going out his bagpack to climb on his shoulder. He looks patiently all new faces. Friend, neutral or potential ennemies, he isn't really sure, but, for now, her friends on two legs seems calm. The weather isn't the best and a good fire will be nice, for all, humans, animals and salamander.

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Betula could hear a big sigh of relief when she poured the water with the old and feeble spirit into the river. Briefly she could see the face of the old hag, looking happier and maybe even younger than before, and then it just faded into the water and disappeared. I reckon this was before the others arrived.


@Arthur Another member of her house ? Great, even Sionag has no idea what he does. Be with other is always nice.

"Pralix ? The lineage of our founder ? I just know the name, not really about your abilities, but it's always nice to meet another traditions."

@Bartomeus Sionag smiles to Hamish, when she understands what he said.
"Pharmacopeans. We are specialist on the use of herbs and other form of medecine. But we use our magie to upgrade our ability to heal. And I was more on the healer's camp. I didn't do no difference between the human being who needs help."

This remark is slightly more for the Flambeau than another people. @John_Graham_52

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"May this home suit you, Aquavita." Betula says after the face disappears.

"We have found a few possible sites, none is exactly what we are looking for but, yes, we should probably make camp and explore this area a bit. Perhaps some rest as well if we can find some suitable shelter. I have already taken some measure of the Aura here and it includes this hill and into the river. Its strength is not that powerful, about the same as Castellum Veridian, a covenant of my apprenticeship but weaker than Ungulus's aura."

Betula's hands go to her belly as she realizes she is no longer hiding the child bump.

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