Chapter I: 1220-1221

Gavin gets a response from a Brigid inghean Fhearghuis of Verditius, from the Hibernian tribunal. She is willing to craft the Eternal Lamp. She is willing to waive half the Vim vis in exchange for the lab text of an item of like power within five years of the delivery of the Lamp.

The others, he's able to barter lab text for lab text (for an item with a similar effect level) or an amount of equal to what it would cost to make the item.

Just let's not try to conflict or sabotage each other. No one wins when bad blood forms between covenfolk. I've had trouble with House members before and this is just a preemptive peace offering and an example of why friendship isb beneficial for everyone.

Really, just one person in three tribunals willing to make an item for vis at Verditius rates. The Verditius are not living up to their reputation. :slight_smile: Alas, because time is more precious to Gavin than vis. I wonder if he'd do better offering more vis for smaller items.

In any case, it looks like Gavin will have to make some of the items himself. That being said, he'll take Brigid up on her offer, agreeing to give her a lab test and paying 3 Ig and 3 Vim vis.

For the rest, he'll also agree to trade lab texts. But he'd like to know what items they can get him lab texts for to see if they're items he can use.

For a year or two of correspondence from a fairly young magus, it's actually not awful. Remember, it takes at least three or four months to get a response from anyone outside the covenant (two months if the timing is just right). Next chapter, it would likely get better.

You make a very good point.

Okay. Found it. I've been looking in the wrong place for it.

[color=brown]"I can do any of those," Eilid says, [color=brown]"save the Flameless Cauldron. Most of them would take two seasons, plus one to prepare the item. The Brazier and the Lamp, I can do in three. Although...I might be able to shave a season if you don't mind my Experimenting."

"I'm honored that you would consider making one of these items for me," Gavin replies. "But I'd assumed that some of the simple ones would be made by people who could create them as lesser enchanted items in a single season. That's the only way I can see them being cost effective. Even paying Verditius rates, those smaller items are really on the border of being worth it. They only give a profit of four vis. If it took you two or three seasons to make it, that's two, or even less than two, vis per season. I'd feel wrong paying so little for your time. I know you could do far better simply distilling vis from the Aura, and I know you have you own research to perform."

"Right now Bea has agreed to make the Faithful Note Stand and the TIreless Companion for me, and I've found a maga who will make the Eternal Lamp for me in partial exchange for a lab text of a similarly powered item. That means that I'll need to craft something like the Brazier of Heating myself to get a lab text to trade. I'd be more than interested in getting the Faithful Equipment Stand, or the Moveable Spell Circle, or the Third Hand made, however. But I don't want abuse our friendship by misusing your time."

I've got Corbin slated to create a lab device in Winter 1221. It was an Imagonem device but I'll swap that out and craft one of either: Movable Circle or Faithful Equipment Stand.
Corbin wants both eventually for himself. If he invents the device in one season (which he can), then needs to spend another crafting more he can create three over two seasons.
Who else is interested in chipping in & trade? Or do you want to trade the texts?

RIght now Gavin is happy to pay for the items or trade lab texts, whatever Corbin likes. We're all fairly flush with vis right now, so I understand that the offer of even more vis is not nearly as tempting as it usually is in a saga. What would you prefer?

Ideally I'd like to find a total of three magi who will work for two seasons each, and share the results amongst each other. Spending two seasons to raise the base lab level by +2 is pretty cheap. Corbin is not really motivated by vis, but would like a few good items, and ideally wants the lab texts.

It needs three magi as the second season can create two items instead of one. I understand that you preference is to spend vis and not seasons though. And it doesn't work well with only two magi.

If we can find a third, I'm game for the item swap.

Hope was planning to take a season to mass produce Wands of Iron Clay. One for the common lab, but one or two would be left over for other people to snap up. She'd do it in the fall after the [strike]magi convention[/strike] Tribunal.

Gavin would certainly be interested in one. What would Hope want for it?

Nothing. Remember Hope does no sales. And with the amount if vis floating around its not like the one Terram is a big deal.

A couple days after the covenant's first meeting a letter arrives addressed in general to the magi of the covenant. It is written in excellent Latin, with a trained but clearly far from expert hand.

Dear magi of Insula Canaria,

I would like to introduce myself. I am Rónan mac Domnall, of the mac Domnall clan in northern Ireland. I am a trained Alchemist of Oxford. While I could pursue academics as many of my brethren, I would prefer a place where magic is more commonplace and appreciated. I am aware of the Order of Hermes and hope I may eventually be accepted into House ex Miscellanea. Even while not a member, I believe I could serve your covenant well if you could provide my family and me a good place in which to reside and work. If this is of interest to you, please send for me at Oxford University.

Yours truly,
Rónan mac Domnall, Alchemist of Oxford

While Beatrix's family resides at the covenant and is around to be seen a lot early on, she herself is not present a lot the first season. She spends that first season as a Redcap, getting to know the tribunal. She is still based at Insula Canaria, just she travels quite a bit about the Tribunal on her own. After this first season she is around a lot more.

Being from the Society of Alchemists, Gavin is more than happy to have another alchemist come to Insula Canaria.

Depending on the items in the swap, that might work well for Beatrix. As noted, beside the Bookstand of Hespera (I'd rather keep the canon name for reference.), Beatrix can make the Tireless Servant. She can make the bookstand in one season at this point, though with one season spent studying Herbam she wouldn't need Günther's help. She doesn't care for bonuses to items, though. And that movable circle isn't as strong as where she's going with Greater Feature/Focus: Summoning Circle. Health is definitely good, and she has uses for text bonuses.

Also, I'll note again that General Quality bonuses are generally worrisome, though they may apply well in certain circumstances.

As I said, if the bookstand gives a bonus to Texts, Gavin has no interest in it. You can only have a bonus to two specializations, and he was going for Spell and Items. Anything that gives a bonus to Texts would be simply lost and therefore of no value to him.

I'm curious, though, what items do you think might give a bonus to General Quality aside from the canonical Tireless Servant? It's in the rules, so there must be something that gives that bonus.

Well, let's take a look at your Third Hand. Its basic premise should be generally useful, except that it isn't quite. There are two issues. First, casting requisites only work with spells. They need to be built into spells. Look at Unseen Arm (ArM5 p.155). Herbam should at least be added, but perhaps more Forms. Second, holding a single thing doesn't get you much. When I'm soldering, for instance, I really need two or more (usually two) things held. I would assume the same is true for jewelers. Sure, the spell is a little more convenient than a nearby table, but not a lot. So I would suggest shifting to T: Group and adding some requisites. It would then make a lot of sense to grant General Quality +1 and Rego +1 at ReTe(An,He, others?)30.

Take a look again at the Tireless Servant. It holds things, fetches things, lifts, stirs, etc. There is a lot of breadth to that. That makes it reasonable for granting a General Quality bonus. I don't really find that comparable to holding a single, lightweight thing in place at any given time.

From the meta-game perspective, it is important not to hand out General Quality bonuses too trivially. It completely undermines the whole idea behind the specializations. Why build two level-20 items to each provide +2 to a specialization when you can build two level-20 items to each provide a +1 to General Quality, which now applies to every specialization? Noting Magical Heating (thinking of the levels required), Magical Lighting (same thing), The Bookstand of Hespera, and The Prodigious Plant Pot in comparison to The Crown of Hermes and The Tireless Servant, I would say the expectation seems to be that >30, maybe ≥40, would be needed for something so generally useful (General Quality, reducing Warping, etc.). That would help keep from undermining the whole chapter with its specializations, too.

And then there is the whole flavor thing. If just about anything can grant a bonus to General Quality, then everything becomes generic.

Separately, I'm not sure why you chose General Quality and Items for a cauldron when the book specifically says "Experimentation, Longevity Rituals, Vis Extraction, Mu, Aq, He, Ig" for a Minor/Major Feature/Focus of a cauldron. Perhaps "Flameless Forge" instead?