(oops, a matter of chronology; Iohannes was a bit back in time. I'll let it be, so that we can sync up)
I notice that this thread hasn't moved since Wednesday but the others have; are we waiting on something OOC?
Sorry, I'm waiting for the magi present to agree on a detailled course of action. I didn't think Andrew was behind the "turn up looking like a warband" option. It's three to one in favour of that plan though, as I see it. Andrew, I'll roll this on and if you have serious problem with the idea, we'll stall the thread and sort them out, OK?
As you approach the ruined bridge, you become aware that there is a large area on either end of it that has been cleared, not merely of trees, but also of all grass, so that it is simply sand. In the shadow of the end oif the bridsge that lies closest to you is a pavilion of black silk, and upon it is a device that those of you with an ujnderstanding of basic heraldry know represents a ford.
A small figure approaches you, human in shape bu in counternance more like a fish-man, with scales on his face and webbind between the fingers of his hands. He wears the badge of the ford on his black robe.
"None may pass the bridge. My master once fought challenges against those who would pass, and let the worthy go, but alas he will no longer do so. You must go. You must go soon, and far, and hide for three years, or my master will kill you all."
As the scene presents itself, Vispillius mutters to his sodales-
"This doesn't look welcoming... keep your hands away from your weapons, men, but sing out at anything untoward".
To the fish-herald, he delivers a formal bow, and replies
"We do not seek to pass, nor cross, neither the ford nor your master, but are here to treat with him in good faith, that we might either make amends for whatever wrong has been done, e'en be it not by ourselves, or to aid him in setting right whatever wrong he perceives, lest it be by general violence.
"He has injured a brother of ours, but we seek only to understand his cause in so doing. If wrongs have been done, will he parley with those who would do a right?"
Vispillius' faerie eyes look into those of the herald, and he wonders if this sort of negotiation translates into the realm of the fae.
(Presence +3, Comm +0, Strong Fae Blood, Charm +1 (first impressions) ... and probably nothing else very relevant.
Folk Ken 2? Guile 2? Craft: Acting 1? Intrigue 1?...)
Titius seems a little annoyed that Vispilius spoke first but decides to simply stand next to him, simply looking to proud to speak with the fish like fae. After all, Vispilius said what Titius meant to say.
Iohannes (we'll just assume he's here) considers his surroundings and what's going on as Vispilius speaks.
(Dice rolls are included as both stress and simple when needed, because I don't know which you prefer here.)
Per+Second Sight: (stress=20/simple=1) 5 or 24 + Aura
Int+Faerie Lore (water): 6(water)
Per+Folk Ken: 8
Iohannes suspects that the knight is upset about the ruined bridge. He also suspects that the knight is inside the pavilion because he is considering his aspect, so to speak; the crows represent death but he might emerge with symbolism representing a different intention. In a sense, he has already done so, still carrying the knightly theme. Is there something Iohannes is missing? Corrects himself about?
If something particular ought to be done to facilitate negotiation, or other information pertaining to protocol.
Iohannes has skill 1 or better in all of these.
Oh, and the inevitable Per+Awareness(alertness): 12(alertness)
Just in case.
After letting the others speak Theodora addresses the herald.
"Surely a great and chivlarous knight such as your master would not seek to harm a defensless woman ?"
Quietly to the others "if he will not speak to us we should withdraw for a space while I see if I can find out what is happening from the local spirits"
- The knight is from the fresh part of the river, above the salt part. He should represent life and renewal.
- The standard mechanism of negotiation with the knight, meeting his challenge or dealing with his squire, are both not working the way that they should.
"I think I have an idea of the cause of our problem, I suspect we will find that the water beneath this bridge is is polluted probably with salt water , our knight has become a knight of death. It is asin medicine although instead of the humors of the body it is the humors of the river that effect the night. If we can restore the state of the river we will avert the problem I will consult with the spirits of the river unless aomeone has a better idea"
Iohannes continues to observe, both the magi and the squire. Too many hands on the rudder are almost as bad as none at all, and he does not yet know enough to decide on a change of course.
OOC: Timothy, if he notices something else, Second Sight, about the goings on, etc, as he observes, please let me know.
Theodora can you summon the spirits then so that we can get this trouble of our hands? I hope that it is a quick solution to our problem with the fae. Personally I donâ€™t use magic that deals with spirits. Do we have any other options in case the spirits of the river donâ€™t do as we wish or must we try smite the fae?
Theodora says "while I try and call a local spirit could someone check the water up and downstream of the Bridge to see if it is salt"
Theodora then moves back away from the road and finds a clear area which is relatively private there she will carefully draw out a summoning circle and attempt to call up the local river spirits hopefully faerie or magical ones
No response is almost more frustrating for Vispillius than a violent one, for he is now left with little personal recourse in the matter. If the fish-herald remains, he shall address him again-
"We will withdraw, and allow your master to consider our plea to discuss the matter. To our brother, he spoke of his regret in the need for violence - when we return again, it will be with the hope that he allows us to help us all avoid that."
"We should take one part of the herald's words to heart, and withdraw out of sight, at least for now. I can check the length of the river, if you think that is the problem. I'll follow it downstream until I find salt water, or some more obvious breach of the sylvan state that the fae so value."
With a gesture and word, he causes the ungainly branch he has lugged thus far to rise with a will of its own, and float in front of him. He swings a leg over it, and settles into a crook between two branches, and with another spell, he disappears from sight, tho' his voice can still be heard plainly, rising into the air -
"I should return well within the hour. Pray do not provoke the knight, nor take any direct action that he might detect and give cause for umbrage. Those with time on their hands may wish to warn mundane travellers, lest we witness what we would ourselves avoid."
With a faint flap of fabric, he leaves to pursue that angle of the investigation.
(OOC- With loud voice/bold gestures, InAq of 10+Aura, /2, looking for a 5 (Base Effect of 3 (nat'l properties of water) +2 Voice. This will require that he rest every now and then, and he'll settle into some woods or other cover for the few minutes to achieve that, then recast Invisibility, move further down the river and repeat.)
The spell allows travel "as fast as a good horse can gallop", so that's about 40 mph/65 kph, give or take detours.)
OOC: wince You're a braver man than I; I'd hate all those stress dice on spells.
As the other magi leave, Iohannes says to the squire, "Pray tarry a moment. You seem distressed by the change in your master, that he no longer offers challenge or permits the worthy to pass. And a calamity it is, surely, for when a knight forsakes his rights and duties, he not only casts his own nobility into the dust, and his noble purpose, but his loyal servants share that loss as well. What transpired to bring about this misfortune?"
[I've just rolled no-botches for your various spells to see if you were going to have trouble in a later iteration of this. The thing is though, you might cut this short. The river is salt north of the bridge and fresh south, just as it should be.]
A slimy dark mermaid, with claws and snakes for hair, crawls up into your circle and asks
"Why have you called me up, little one?"
He looks sadder than before, and little fishy men are rarely not sad looking.
"Humans did. They always do. Every change in us is a change in you. I cannot say. He serves them now. And I him. You must flee. Flee and hide and wait."
Iohannes says, "What did these humans do? And what part do the crows play in this?"