Convention of the Redcaps (Autumn 1230)

((awaiting reply to this before Fédora addresses Rodrigo.))

Yes, you instantly recognize him. And what you know of him is more myth than fact.
You know him to have been a mundane Redcap who spontaneously developed the Gift onde day (this much is true), that he is supposedly the reincarnation of Mercere with his Gift restored (that is just superstitious bs), that he quickly grew to be a powerful and wise wizard (all false, his Flambeau buddies helped to make him look good and the Mercere made sure he was well equipped, but he managed a few utility formulaics at best), that he sired many Gifted children after his transformation (not true, he has two sons, one Gifted and a member of House Jerbiton, the other mundane who rides with the Knights of Caltrava, both born before his Gift emerged), that he defeated the Malik Khyron al'Afrit (half true, Antonio of Flambeau beat him the first time around, Rodrigo trapped him in a brass bottle when they last faced off, and that he knew the secret to defeating twilight (not at all true and everyone knows this is a myth yet they perpetuate it, but then again he did accidentilly on purpose turn himself into a genie via experimentation).

Fédora rises to her feet and approaches Rodrigo, curtsying deeply. [color=blue]"Rodrigo of Mercere, it is a great honor to meet you. You are a legend even in distant Novgorod, and I feel humbled even to be speaking with you today, let alone seeking your help in restoring our home to the glory it had when you were here last."

Rodrigo bows
The honor is mine, and yours is already an age of Glory, the glory of late Summer. You wish to stave off Autumn in hopes of delaying the eventual Winter. I understand, and I tell you there is hope.

[color=blue]"I hope and pray you are correct," Fédora says with a smile. [color=blue]"But Andorra has recently survived a devastating physical attack. And we fear an equally devastating emotional attack, should Mercere decide to move our house elsewhere. I will do everything in my power to ensure that the Mercere House stays in the best possible location.

And since you're familiar with how the House had been, I would be most remiss in not seeking your counsel."

Your rhetoric is smooth. This will be an asset when dealing with the Mercere. They need you more than you need them. You just need to convince them of that. But first, you must convince yourself of that.
As for myself, I am already committed to your cause, and I assure you there is no doubt as to your continued prosperity. The covenant has been attacked before and has emerged from winter at least once before. Andorra Covenant shall endure as long as its Eternal Flame burns unending.
Speaking of which, I have an interesting idea. As you may know or already guess, I have transformed myself into a genie. Or so I believe. I was researching legends of other mortal sorcerors transforming into magic spirits, and the magic of Sulimain wizards to that extent. My experiments had hardly begun when spectatular unexpected results transformed me thusly. I was unprepared for transformation and I do not fully understand the extent. But my best guess is that I am a genie, and my locus is the Phoenix Sword of Valdarius.
I am considering if it is possible to transfer my Locus to the Eternal Flame.

On a 15 Magic Theory, does Tiana think that transferring himself to the Flame is possible/likely/a good idea?

I cannot form your opinions for you

[color=blue]"Are you sure that's a good idea?" Fédora asks Rodrigo. [color=blue]"I'm sure that the Eternal Flame is well-guarded and protected, but it is still a flame. Would it not be less risky to keep your form in something less likely to be destroyed or extinguished? Even if such a transfer is possible?"

((How much, if anything, does Fédora know about the Flame?))

I believe this is the first time anyone has talked about it at great lenth, so probably she knows only what she has learned just now. And what she inquires about :smiley:
The Eternal Flame must never be allowed to be extinguished. If it ever goes out, Andorra shall fall. As long as it burns, the covenant shall ever stand and live.

Carmen looks contemplative, sitting quietly with her fingers tented considering how to best respond to Vibria's question. She takes a deep breath, pauses, then speaks.
I..., I honestly don't know.
It should be apparent by now that there are a lot of mysteries about this place. Arcane mysteries as well as hidden secrets. No one knows them all. We could make an adventure of several seasons just exploring this place. That would get pretty boring pretty quick though. ":Dear diary: Today we continued exploring the catacombs. Another tomb full of bones and dust. Day twenty: more bones and dust. Day 37, more bones and dust, and a talking rat named Sam.
Vulcanus had heard Rodrigo make mention of the Ice Cavern. Even I have never been in there, and only vaguely know how to get to it. For all I know, Marcellus still sleeps in there (Marcellus of Flambeau was a former member and had the blood of Frost Giants, and if he is still alive and present, he is senior to Carmen and would have the right to be Pontifex).
I do know something about the Eternal Flame, a few facts, some false myths, and legends of unknown potential possibility. I will take you all there if you want

((Here is a description of the Eternal Flame from the Andorra wiki. The write up is by Fixer, based off (and heavily quoted from) my description to the player/character Octavian of Tremere, who was taken to it by Antonio. Octavian had Visions and Second Sight. We have a magic powder (one of the few things that wasn't stolen!) that, when thrown into the flame, induces Visions in those with that Flaw. These visions are most always accurate, and easier to comprehend than natural visions. Carmen tells you guys all about this, and that Octavian's Visions told him that he had to go to Val-Negra. Which he did (with Inigo, Vares, and Ludovicio). Val-Negra is a whole 'nother ball of wax that has nothing to do with any of this. But if you guys ever wanna go check it out in the future, we have directions on how to get there).

My experience with the Eternal Flame is this. Carmen lifts up her shirt to show you her midriff, not at all concerned that it may be considered unseemly to the prudish amongst us. On her right side, just below the ribs, is a circular brand about an inch in diameter. If I had a way to draw right here in forum it would be easier to show you. The symbol of the Knights of Seneca is a twin-headed dragon, necks entwined once and facing opposite of each other. As a brand, the simple rune form of this symbol looks something like an "X" with the cross point much lower than normal (the intertwined necks), and a little outward facing serif at the top of each line (the heads of the dragons facing away from each other).
I was branded by Rodrigo over here, when he was still mortal, about ten years ago when he inducted me into the Knights of Seneca as "The Lady of Seneca". My father was pissed! The title they gave him, "Grandmaster", it is an honorific. More of a joke really, a taunt that caught on as a nickname that grew to be respected. There is no actual hierarchy or formal set of rules amongst the Knights of Seneca. It isn't even a purely Flambeau societas. Rodrigo of Mercere and Octavian of Tremere are/were both members. We even have a lineage of Verditius mixed with Flambeau! (Dimir Taar of Verditius was a Knight of Seneca, and is/was sort of a Hermetic "cousin" to Vulcanus' Flambeau lineage).
Like I was saying, my father was angry at Rodrigo but could do nothing about it. Any Knight of Seneca can invite any magus to join our ranks, which has just always been consented to. I had several supporters, and my father would dare not claim his only apprentice was weak or unworthy. His only problem was that I was a girl.
Not all the Knights of Seneca bear this brand, but all have the right to. Some don't know about the custom, others uninterested or use their own source of flame. A Criamon magus once branded his face with it and purposefully blinded himself. Whatever other mystical significance it may have, a brand serves as an Arcane Connection to the flame that the brand was received from. Wherever I am, even if all possessions are taken from me, I can still teleport back home to Andorra. I can always use InIm5 Compass of the Vigilant Flame to find my way home.
And I have the power to open the doors guarding the Eternal Flame.
I have no idea what else it enables me to do. Probably nothing. But you guys might be starting to learn that there are a lot of weird secret enchantments upon doors and rooms and etcetera, designed with this or that restriction or condition such as having such and such title, walking a certain way, having a certain birthday. Whatever. A lot of it is pointless and stupid and rendered obsolete by moving things around and creating new complicated enchantments that only work if you are wearing a specific matching color or whatever.
I hope you realize I am kidding. Exaggerating really. There are strange things about this place. And each generation has stacked on their own strange things as legacies for the next generation.
Keep that in perspective as I tell you about the myths and legends I know.
It is said that this whole castle is a conjuration, created by Valdarius using Merinita magic and the Duration of Fire. This is a myth and utterly false. Sections of wall and towers and other buildings have been torn down and rebuilt countless times over the ages. The covenant and the original keep predates Valdarius by nearly a century. Valdarius never dabbled in Faerie magic and Fire Duration doesn't work that way. It can only be used with Ignem and Imaginem spells.
However, he may have dabbled in various strange mysteries that we cannot be certain of, and that are now lost to his lineage. Probably spirit magic. Maybe Hermetic Architecture. Can't be certain. There is evidence of work like that on the front gate, but it comes from a much later date.
What else?
Some say that the flame is not actually magical, just a natural wonder. There are other fires like it reported around the known world, some magical and others not so much so. It is a natural wind that emits from the bowels of the earth which ignites upon the surface. No one has been able to detect anything unusual with Intellego magic. But maybe no one has tries hard enough. It does induce Visions, but that may be an effect of that magic dust we toss into it. Those with Second Sight claim that it is almost like looking into another world through the flame. But really, try to follow it and you just wind up burning yourself.
Now as for the question at hand, concerning Rodrigo's proposal to to the Eternal Flame. Is this thing feasible and should we do this? I don't know enough about genies to say if it is possible or how this works. Rodrigo seems to know something about it though. But I say, if it is at all possible, then yes. Let's go for it. Whatever it takes to bring mi tio back home to us for good.
And I can already see the strategy at hand. If House Mercere is worried about the security of their assets, we can tell them that the spirit of one of their most legendary members has returned to serve as our guardian. That will make them drool, and Andorra will become a virtual pilgrimage site!

Vulc looks bored with all the talking. "If there's any lab work I can do to help improve the Mercer House, or otherwise improve relations between Andorra and Mercere, let me know. I'll be happy to make it my top priority. Otherwise, I don't really think I have anything to contribute." He won't get up and leave the council chamber, but it's clear he wants to :slight_smile:

So, at some later point, I would like to set up a scene where a conference between Tiana, Fedora, and Rodrigo takes place. To discuss what they plan to do when the delegates arrive, um, next week?
However, in order for this to take place, Vulcanus has to lend one of them the Phoenix Sword and/or someone has to make a "Bargain" with Rodrigo (unbinding him from his locus to fulfill said bargain, as per the rules for genies).

Does Fédora know how this works? I'm fairly certain the player doesn't, since the rules for genies are, I think, in The Cradle and the Crescent, which I don't have.

(Which is my passive-aggressive way of saying, "Would you please explain how that works for me?" I'm trying to be better, I really am. :smiley: )

I do not own

either. I am pulling my information from RoP: Magic, p. 106-107. The last paragraph in the description of Jinn.

From there, I extrapolated the concept of the magic of Solomon when I wrote The City of Brass for Tales of Power. Rodrigo's locus is the Phoenix Sword. He cannot go far from it, nor can he move if he holds it. A Bargain would suspend both these limits.

That is the information I am handing out for free. If you would like to know more, give me a roll for Magic Lore.

Vulc hovers while they're using the sword, because he trusts neither of them to not cut themselves.

Tiana bargains: 6 + 3 Com + 3 Bargain = 12.

what is the wording of your bargain?

Uhh, what? Tiana comes up with that, I don't. I'm That Guy who goes to India and pays vendors the price that they ask for things without even trying to haggle. My character is much better at bargaining and precise wording than I am!

you don't really need to make a roll or precise wording. Rodrigo will do it for you.
I agree to help you renew the Mercere Lodge contract, if you allow me to help you renew the Mercere Lodge contract :laughing:

Sounds fine to me :slight_smile: Though we should verify first that Rodrigo is actually, without a doubt, of the Magic Realm before we agree to it.