Chapter 6: the founding fathers

You take a boat downriver and after a few days of traveling you are at the large boulder where the path branches of into the Westerwald. When you enter the forested hills of the Westerwald in the morning, it seems quiet to you.

ooc: finish up the last chapter then move here. Edit: any preparations?

ooc: 2 seasons before tribunal
you can
a) go to the westerwald and set up houses or labs
b) recruit people willing to resettle there (grogs and specialists). If you do, tell me where you are looking and how you want to convince them to go there.
c) stay in Durenmar and spend your 4 seasons of copying
d) visit 2 other Rhine covenants in person

You can write to other covenants and do sth else, as long as you leave a return address. People who travel may collect the stuff left in Trier without losing time.

Hildegard decides to travel to the westerwald site (describing it again for the Mercere mail service) and is eager to set up a lab.

If we want to RP the point when Lynchissa joins the covenant, I guess we can do that in 5.5? Presumably, the others have told me the tale of their travels.

Lynchissa: [color=grey]"Rather than seek too much before properly exploring the area and its resources, I think we should concentrate on trying to collect a small group of covenfolk that can be quickly become self-sufficient.

"I would go to Trier, where we have three valuable commodities: the supplies of the former covenant, a contact among the masonry and construction forces, and a contact with this minority race you mentioned. The wine-seller may know some who would be willing to leave the city for a life free from the prohibitions of the city, and the chief mason may know skilled men who, due to injury or misfortune, can no longer work on his construction. I would also conduct a more thorough search for the covenant there -- Murion seemed surprised by how little space they took up. I think I will borrow a page from Hildegard's book and dress like a child while there. I could also acquire mundane texts regarding the geography and lore of the area, and possibly other subjects as well.

"The chief problems with this plan are: my appearance, my Gift and my lack of a grog. ~sigh~ Perhaps I should just visit my pater's covenant and Irencilla and see what resources I can muster."

(OOC: I'm willing to do either, on input from the others. Was there something about an option to studying P:Scribe before doing the copying?)

Specialists Lynchissa wants:

  • Silversmith (forge companion plus superior equipment)
  • Toolmaker (superior tools)
  • cost reducers. Maybe an ink-maker, and hope there's special dyes available in the woods?

Re:Grogs, Hunter types seem like the most useful, even if we move to Kaub eventually (bows)

Other thoughts:

  • Since she's Elder Gild, she'll oppose lumber as an industry, but that still leaves animal hunting and such.
  • With two Terram magi, I think I'm mostly hoping that we can find a mining resource. I guess she should look for spells that would help with that.

I had stuff i was doing from the Covenant building thread.

To modify that. He will help identify if there are rooms and move the items. Then leave Lynchissa to recruit grogs ( introducing her to the family south of town), as he heads to Irencilla and Fengheld.

Arturous and Hildegard travel to the Waldstein site (I won't roleplasy this for myself).
Honorus and Lynchessa travel to Trier to get the items they left there.
Carolinus was going to hire people.

Should Lynchessa try to find someone to teach her more Scribe while in Trier? She's at 2 now.

It takes a few days to travel down the Neckar and the Rhine, and then to go to Trier. Apart from the usual hassle (including children throwing cowpats at you in a village), the time is uneventful.

On the last night before arriving at Trier, the two Terram magi confer on how to proceed, ere entering the town.

Did we bring any grogs/companions?

[color=grey]"This underground covenant, is it inhabitable? Perhaps we should just hole up in there and use this wineseller as our go-between."

Albirich, your only grog on this mission, reminds his masters: "The last time you were in Trier, you got involved in that tavern brawl, but that was because the Bishop was at the Reichstag in Frankfurt. Maybe things are easier this time".

[color=grey]"A good point, Albirich. This is why I suggest we see about lodging in the old covenant, while you arrange meetings with prospective covenfolk."

Albirich departs for the city.

When he comes back, he reports that the city gates are closed at night, so unless they want to sleep in the Roman ruins that stretch between the theatre and the city, they'll have to enter in daylight. He says that the Jew is a tough negotiator, but that he would have them for a night so they could pay for the leftover books and items.

[color=grey]"Very well, let us begin immediately, and then we shall see what a night's conversation can do."

Barring input from Honorus, whom she'll defer to (he's been here before), they'll head to the wine-seller's during the day, and begin packing things up for Honorus's departure -- if we somehow offend David (the wineseller), I want Honorus to be able to leave quickly without having to leave anything behind.

I believe there was a book about the covenant itself? I imagine that Lynchessa and Honorus will want to skim that before investigating with magics.

Not sure if it is better to do this through Albirich or not. I believe my Com +2 + Bargain 2 (items) works out to be the same as his Com + Bargain, only there's the Gift modifier, so I suppose that means having Albirich do it. Towards the end of that first day, she'll have Albirich discuss her plans for the coming season with David and see if they can enlist his help.

The plans have been well and thoroughly discussed during the trip here.

[color=grey]"If he is really as shrewd a businessman as you say, Albirich, then perhaps we should attempt to enlist him to our cause. Trier is a city, after all, and it will be much easier to obtain certain items here than in the wilderness. Play up the fact that the last time we were here, we had to flee the city because we were seen associating with his people. If we were interrupted in this way again, it will take us much longer to pay him, and this opens up the topic of whether he knows any Jews who might wish to join us, seeking a life beyond this persecution. After all, he already knows we are magi, and he is already entangled with us, because of the 7-year lease he gave us on the books."

They arrive at David's house, and the wineseller opens the door himself. A frown quickly melts into a servile smile as he quickly ushers you into the back room, and sends someone away, who quickly returns with five sturdily built young men who speak with David in a language you don't know.

Politely, he asks, if they've only come to collect the remaining books and items in the basement, or if he can help with anything else. In his unmistakenly Yiddish accent, he also tells them that he has made a list of the items in question to make negotiations easier:

  • The Bible (Latin)
  • St. Augustine's City of God (Latin)
  • Comments on St. Augustine's City of God by Gregorius
  • Ars Amatoria by Publius Ovidius Naso (The Art of Love, Latin)
  • Vom Heylen der Knochen (German, on bonesetting)
  • Of the covenant of Treverorum (Latin)
  • 2 books in another language that uses neither the Latin nor the Greek alphabet
  • Theoria Magica for apprentices by Horst ex Mercere (Latin, a tractatus all but Arturuous have read, Q13)
  • Craft Magic (Latin)
  • Mentem Primer by Oculus (Latin)
  • Triangles by Pythagoras (Greek alphabet - language unknown: Greek?)
  • Constantine's New Rome by Methodicos Glyptologos (Greek alphabet - language unknown: Greek?)

Price: 1pound per book, 10p for all the books

  • Arcane props for ritual casting (a throne decorated with semi-precious stones, and a mechanical device simulating the heavenly spheres, and a delictely decorated mirror, wand hangings, could be packed and transported in one season by anybody, setting up would take another season and a large room, they'd grant a bonus on ceremonial casting)
    Price: 10 pounds + 1 pound for packing and shipping

  • stuff that looks mundane and doesn't look valuable (about room of it: brooms, chairs, pieces of furniture, bowls etc)
    price: 1 pound + 1 pound for packing and shipping

  • equipment for two basic labs or one standard lab(some stuff was taken away). Packing + transporting takes a season (unskilled) per basic lab.
    price: 2x1 pound + 2x1 pound for packing and shipping

  • copper astronomical device with a lot of wheels and clockwork, adorned with the planetary symbols - clicking and moving almost imperceptibly. It must be magical somehow. Like a clock, it has a hand: The hand is an actual hand taken from a marble statue (pointing somewhere), tied to a metal rod that turns in a circle: At one point it will strike a silver bell - sometime next month.
    price: 5 pounds

ooc: the information given is what you can figure out with your skills by looking at the stuff. If one of you spends a day examining each item, you can learn the quality and abilities taught by the books, or the bonuses given by the items. You will not automatically recognize magic items or what they can do (if there are any). Murion gave you 50pounds of silver.

Do you want me to control Albirich, negotiate through him, etc?

[color=grey]"Oh, yes, there is much and more to discuss, as well you know. Are these men here to interview for the positions mentioned in the letter?"

OOC: There was, of course, no letter, but the pretense that we'd sent instructions ahead of time with additional requests might get Lynchessa the season living in the covenant that she wants, and also provides some RP time during which Honorus can jump in, should he desire.

Carolinus will spend the season travelling back to the Westerwald with Tristram, stopping along the way at Speyer, Worms, and Mainz. He will visit the catherdrals and synagogues there (because he is curious about them). His other motivations for stopping in the cities are to find carpenters and others who can help rebuild the destroyed houses at Waldstein, and to acquire laboratory equipment and any books that might be available. To save money, Carolinus will "sing for his supper" in inns along the way, and hopefully make some good contacts in the process. He is not above using enchanting music to sway people to his cause, if he has the chance, but will probably try to refrain from using other magic in the cities due to the divine aura. He will also write to the Jerbiton magi at Oculus Septentrionalis, introducing himself and the other magi settling at Waldstein, indicated that he can be contacted there.

David shakes his head: "They are here to make sure you won't defraud me of what is mine. I've taken other precautions, as well. A man can never be too careful." he smiles thinly. "So, what do you buy?"

[color=grey]"Ah, I understand. A man must be careful in times like these, after all. Do you wish to negotiate these matters now, or after the interviews are complete? Do you know when we are expecting the applicants? May I ask how many you've located? You have been quite thoughtful in providing prices for packing labor, but frankly we were expecting those we hired through you to handle such work as part of their travel preparations."

(And then pressing on, so there's some forward momentum...)

[color=grey]"My understanding was that we'd already reached an accord on the books. I believe you had offered a 7 year loan of these books, gratis, that we might copy them before returning them to you? The phrase, if I recall, was "as a show of good faith." As I mentioned in the letter, we're seeking a full time scribe for our expedition anyway, so if you've located one familiar to you, that would resolve most of the concerns we had mentioned about keeping your collection secure."

OOC: Did anybody want these?

Lynchessa will begin bartering in earnest over these items, though she is more concerned with getting a measure of David's skill than in getting a great bargain. Are we using Albirich's bargain skill, or Lynchessa's?

If Lynchessa, it's Com 2 + Bargain 2 (items) -3 Gift = 2 + die,
Albirich's would be Com 1 + Bargain 3 (no specialty listed) = 4 + die
The Die roll is 4, in either case.

This will be saved for the very last, after David takes the bait and asks about the interviews he was "supposed" to arrange. Once we've established his bonafides, and then hopefully engaged his help in acquiring covenfolk, and discussed whether or not he'd be interested in acting as our purchasing agent in the future, then Lynchessa can discuss her concerns and curiosity regarding the device -- which she'll use as a segue to her request to stay in the Trier Covenant for the season, to further explore the covenant, investigate the device, interview potential covenfolk, etc.

The Jew looks at Lynchessa and says: "I have no idea what you are talking about, but I'd like us to stay on topic. I permitted you to copy those books, and to borrow them, but I thought about it again, and in case mighty wizards like you do not want to waste their time on copying, I can sell you the originals."
When Albirich starts negotiating, he listens him out and says: "Nice try, but these prices are fixed. Don't insult me by confusing my generosity with stupidity."

[color=grey]"To keep matters simple, we'll agree to purchase all of the books, and the contents of the three rooms* for 17p. The scribal work would be no bother, From your comments and the inclusion of prices for packing and transportation, it seems that you did not get our letter, which is a bit of a bother. We had hoped you might introduce us to some of your brothers and sisters in faith, people looking for the opportunity to live somewhere more tolerant of their beliefs, and had assumed they would do the packing and transporting for us. Is this an endeavor you'd be able to help us with?"

  • = three rooms, meaning the two labs and the mechanical device

The Jew smiles and replies: "I'm glad you find 17 pounds, 19 if packing and shipping is included, to be an agreeable sum. As for my relatives, I will ask around, but please allow mto point out that magi like yourselves live a dangerous life. If you leave me a forwarding address, I will tell you, if I find anyone interested.
I still need to know, of course, where you gentlemen reside."