Chapter 7: The return to Ungulus (End of Autumn 1013)

"It's nice to be settled for a bit," says Thom.

"Been working on inventing the Wizard's Vigil. Curious bit of wizardry, that. And I'm healed up from that drubbing I got from that water elemental. Sionag is a wonder! But sadly, I'm hardly finding a hint of the Fae around the towers. Maybe I need to learn a water breathing spell and check the lake... And oh! You know, I figured out how to transform into a vulture like Cath'rinne! In fact, I need to go for a fly over the lake when the clouds clear."

Thom smiles.

"Do you know how to build an herbam tower like Master Janus's new mystical tower? I was thinking that could be ideal for the center of the Midsummer Copse. I"m sure we're all going to want to be working in that density of wonderful aura. I'm hoping to make a trip down that way soon so we can start to get a better understanding of the villages around those parts."

"You can change into a vulture now Thom? Are you trying to come onto me, or something?"

"Would it work?" asks Thom before he laughs, a youthful fae-blooded mirth.

"I watched you enough, Cath'rinne, to figure out the knack of it. It wasn't easy, mind, and I couldn't quite figure out how to do another kind of bird. But we should go flying sometime. I need to keep practicing when I have the time."

Cath'rinne smiles, unsure how to take the laugh but amused nonetheless. "I might like a flymate sometime." she says. She looks at Betula. "But we were talking about a place to live."

Sionag will join the discussion
"Oh, Betula, I find you... It's complicated to follow your pregnancy if you live in total seclusion. I would like to help you to live all around the baby easier and safer. And so, you want to talk with me, Cath'rinne ?"

"I do not know of a spell that can create a tower of living wood but it may be possible. I am sure it would take me a long time to invent such a spell assuming its magnitude is at or near that of Conjuring the Mystic Tower. Smaller, individual housing might be more possible in the near term," Betula answers, "as I mentioned to Cath'rinne, I must stay here at least through the end of my pregnancy but, likely, my traveling will be curtailed even once the child is born."

"I'm not fully surprised. Either way, it takes a little time to set things up like this, we need covenfolk, income and that kind of thing. Individual housing has advantages in avoiding disruption and general privacy. How small, and what type are you contemplating?"

"I would have to work out the geometry but I believe individual, smaller building could be standard sized labs and we could house at least five of them in the area defined by the copse. What I am not sure of is how many magnitudes this would save when inventing the spell."

"Mystic Tower isn't a particularly efficient spell for its magnitude, the main argument in it's favor is complete control over floor designs. Doing a fifth magnitude Creo Herbam spell which we can share ought to be possible." she says, outlining an example with one floor "or two floors with a staircase in the common area" while saying she's not necessarily attached to that design. "A fourth magnitude spell for a single occupant ought to be possible... but the space will likely be small."

"Well all of these details can likely be worked out when we have labs to work on these projects. the more pressing issues are whether we will be able to convince Lise to allow us to stay there and, as you said, the necessary income and covenfolk for a second site. For me, it is all somewhat moot until Summer at the earliest as I will not be able to travel much from now until the baby is born."

"Clearly, I don't advice a such move before the end of your pregnancy. But that let us time to prepare our installation. That couldn't be bad. And a fourth magnitude spell in Creo Herbam, it's not so much hard. Maybe I need two seasons, depends the quality of the lab that I could lean here and if someone are ready to help me in the laboratory. That would be better to have the mean to install us before move."

"What do all of you think needs to be determined and wrangled out to settle there? A delegation to speak with Lise? I would like to ask the permission of the Trees but that may prove difficult as they seemed to resist my magic the last time I tried speaking to one."

"That and we probably need to talk a bit more with the otters and the King of the Foam," says Thom.

"Having an agreement with Lise on how things will work would be good. And we need to figure out how to keep the chapter paid and fed. I'm unsure what to think of the tree situation you describe. We were thinking of going in the Spring. If it's too early for you, do you prefer that we wait till the Summer, that we go ahead and that you join us for the next trip if there's one?"

"Perhaps that would be best, returning in Summer, all of us rather than merely those able to go in Spring."

"That's wise," says Thom with a smile. "And you'll have had a chance to regain your strength. Sionag is a dab hand with the healing. Look how well she did with me!"

The handsome magus pulls off his tunic to show how little evidence is left of the number the water elemental did to his shoulder, chest and arm. Only a little yellow bruising remains around the shoulder, though it's clear that Thom's time in studies hasn't impacted his fit form. He pulls the tunic back down over his head.

"I don't remember: was Lise always there or did she travel about among the copses? Perhaps we need to fly down and leave her a message to meet us? It was called the midsummer copse, so perhaps we could think about an offering or some arcane gift to give at the mid-summer solstice that might demonstrate our respect for the place."

"She is not always there. I would have to check my notes but I believe she visited on some moon related schedule."

"Summer it is, then. Assess the surrounding areas for income, deal with Lise, deal with the faeries, seek vis income, and anything else we deem needed while on site. Sounds like a fun adventure. We should talk to the companions. We can only accomplish this with skilled help."

OOC: season plan chart adjusted.