“Heal a Diedne and you will become my enemy, I give you fair warning” replies Janus angrily
"Our lineage is specialized in understanding different paths to magic. That makes it easier for those tradition to join the Order. For example, we have an easier time opening the Hermetic Arts of their apprentices after they've already been introduced to the special abilities of their tradition. So we can help with that."
Once the current discussion is over, Thadeus will explore the area, using his magical sight to see what he can learn about it. (Comprehend Magic roll of 12)
Thom follows after Thadeus.
"May I join you? I could use a bit of a walk."
Unless refused, the young Merinita follows along with Thadeus as he explores the area. Thom uses Second Sight as they go along [Second Sight Roll: 9].
As they go, he pays particular attention to Thadeus as the Pralix works and observes.
"Do you have the second sight, Thadeus? Or some other art that aids you as you explore?"
Note: Thom has cast Scent of Nearby Vis (Spot Cast InVi 5, Roll 18 with Sun duration) to help him sniff out any vis that might be about.
"My tradition has an ability that is similar to the sight, but it is both more limited and more powerful. It allows me to comprehend magic that I look at, for example how powerful a magical effect is and with what Hermetic Arts it is linked. It works on auras, vis, magical devices and any active magical effects. So I don't need a spell to tell me that the aura here is fairly good."
Betula follows as well concentrating on finding a relatively sheltered place to camp.
Hamish looks about for the Pomeranians before he hurries up to walk beside Betula, eyes scanning about for a good place to make shelter and set up camp. [Per + Survival Roll: 6]
"When will you... When will the baby come?" he asks quietly after a few minutes of looking.
"What?!" Betula says, "oh, this... um, spring. I plan to return to Ungulus for the Winter."
Hamish nods thoughtfully. “Sorry to pry, but I feel like we need to see to your protection until we have you back at Ungulus. I’ll ask Jack to be your aid and guard. If that suits you, milady.”
"That would be... acceptable," Betula says.
Thom nods as they walk.
“That’s really handy. This was something you were taught then? Part of your tradition? Or a mystery? My apologies if I’m prying too much. Just curious. I didn’t get out much during my apprenticeship.”
Thom’s brows furrow for a moment.
“I wonder when the next tribunal will happen. Won’t we need to get some kind of approval there to form a new covenant?”
“You think there are enough members of the Order and covenants left on this island to form a Quorate tribunal sodalis? Twelve magi from four covenants are required and to my knowledge only Cad Gadu and Blackthorn are operating for sure and we have no idea how many magi are members. I think we will need to form our covenant just to allow this tribunal to reform, never mind ask permission to do so” replies Janus
"Agreed," Thadeus nods to Janus. "In the current state of things, I doubt anyone will object in us establishing a covenant. Any vote to reject our recognition would probably be inquorate in the first place. If not," he shrugs, "we'll cross that bridge if we get there."
Answering Thom's question, "Yes, it was something thaught to me as part of my lineage. Something Pralix picked up after forming the Ordo Miscellanea, before it became a new House of the Order of Hermes."
If I understood you correctly you take at least one full day to rest and explore. There is no obvious vis source, but Thadeus can confirm the aura at level 4, roughly circular, covering the low hill and the river as it surrounds it on three sides.
The area is really peaceful. Surrounding hills give protection from winds, and the grogs find good fishing downstream. It feels like a good place to settle, at least as far as mundane reason goes. The land across the river looks arable and the woods would give timber if you need it. The only thing to break the peace is the chilly air reminding you of the oncoming Winter.
"Strange that a fairly good aura like that doesn't manifest vis in a concentrated shape, but that may only happen at specific times of the year," muses Thadeus.
"It would certainly be a pleasant place to establish a covenant. Good lands for the mundanes to grow crops nearby and harvest woods, easily defensible with the river, and with good access to the sea for travel and trade. On the small side and a bit close to a mundane settlement, maybe, but otherwise interesting. Not as good as Ungulus, but close."
Thom smiles his appreciation to Thadeus for the answers to his questions before he returns back to sit with others of an evening by the fire.
He looks over at Janus, thoughtful.
"Master Janus, from what you say about the defunct tribunal, I am beginning to think that speed in establishing a covenant may be a priority, right? One the one hand, we may need to continue to defend against the Diedne troublemakers. On the other, we likely need to defend against others who may see this as an opportunity to exploit the chaos. Even members of our own Order."
Thom looks over to Thadeus.
"There certainly is an argument for attempting to inhabit Ungulus though there must be rules to follow there too. Chronos is the only living magus, right? It certainly would allow us to establish things sooner, but I don't know... Something about it feels like putting on someone else's small clothes. It's not quite our own. But I suppose that's a fairly common thing. So little is truly new...."
Sionag seemed fully concentrated to help to find a shelter, ignoring clearly the remark of the Flambeau. She will do what she wants, like all another times.
She raised an ears when she heards about a futur birth and approaches the futur parents, or the people who would be the parents according her comprehension. (@Bartomeus & @dc444 )
"I'm not a specialist about midwifery, I'm generally more on the battle field, but I'm still a physician. I think I could help you, if there isn't a person more qualified than me."
Thadeus nods at Thom's words, "Yes, if we join Ungulus, in a way we would stepping in someone else's shoes. Only Chronos is alive, that we know of. Tessa may be alive, somewhere, but it is more likely that she is not."
"Sure, there would be rules there that we would have to follow. Rules that we did not decide on. But rules can evolve, when the members of a covenant wants them to."
"And what happens to Ungulus if we do not join it? I would bet that someone else will. Chronos will surely try to recruit new magi, for he alone cannot keep it functional. And if he doesn't, soon enough someone else will take control of the covenant away from him. Blackthorne, if no one else."
"But establishing your own covenant is every junior magus' dream. Pick your own rules, not have anyone order you around. I might like that too. And a place like this sure looks nicer than Ungulus. But we'd start from scratch, too. It would require years of work from each of us before our covenant reaches maturity. In the mean time we would be vulnerable. To the enemy, and to others. More vulnerable than we'd be if we join Ungulus. Become Ungulus."
He shrugs, perhaps a bit embarassed by the long speech. "It's decision each of us needs to make. Or we can make it collectively. Both, really."
"Cath'rinne ex Bjornaer. Pleased to meet another member of the order.
Cath'rinne is surprised to see her pregnancy but doesn't add to Betula's embarassment. She delicately steps back towards the group, and will slip into her robe and take her human form for their time there.
"I agree. And we can choose, if necessary, to settle different sites if we want to, and still cooperate. That being said, with the salmon story, I wonder if we shouldn't have a look underwater. Swimming's not really my thing. Is anyone good at it? Otherwise, there are still the Farne islands, not too far from here."
Chronos has been there all the time, but often lost in his own thoughts. Other times, he is concentrating over his diary, making new notes. He kindly asked for help getting a bird to make quills at some point, and he has had to take some time along the way to make inks.
Assuming that the discussion about Ungulus is open, he corrects you. «To be fair, I never entered the covenant. To me it has only ever been a field posting, and I only came there after the Diedne in Mercia and Wales had been defeated.»
If you ask his advice, he will never commit to any conclusion. «Ungulus has been a military outpost, even since it founding, and even if it has formally been a covenant, currently between Tessa, Frederic, and Tacitus, it has seen a lot more change-over than any other covenant I ever heard about. Blackthorn and Tremere have invested heavily there, as a base for the March, and I am sure they will make claims. Whether such claims would have any merit if you decide to settle in an abandoned tower, is unclear; I cannot think of any precedent, and I do not know what promises Tacitus may have made or if such promises would bind the covenant. Obviously, if Tessa returns, her claims would be valid.»
“From what we have seen so far between the two exploration groups Ungulus seems the best option to me and I intend to settle there. I will deal with the Tremere of Blackthorne if I need to. I will keep the sanctum of Tessa secure in case she returns but otherwise I will use the resources of the covenant to continue to prepare and prosecute the war with the Diedne. Is anyone with me?”