March 1218. New beginnings

Sulpice walks over to Remi and addresses him quietly but precisely in Latin: I wish to avoid letters between Fra Pacifico in Paris and me, before I sign the covenant charter. So I would have to take signing it upon my conscience, which I cannot do lightly.
Is it an agreement of mutual support between scholars? Or do I need to pose as - whatever weird kind of - a knight? You do not need to answer now, as I will have to check everything in person anyway.
Can you provide me the document, best with a list of all its past and current signataries, in the library - or better yet in the chapel? I will discuss it with Fra Taddeo. We both know the rules of the little friars, of course.
In case, that complex issues come up at that time, we might wish to be able to refer to Augustine's De Civitate Dei for the spirit and the Decretum Gratiani for the letter of the laws of the Church. If you can provide it, Peter Damian's LIber Gomorrhianus may help to find egregious traps in old documents. All of these books will also be handy, if the prince-bishop should check in earnest the orthodoxy of our community later.
Finally, I need to meditate in the chapel over night about the charter, together with Fra Taddeo. I hope I can give you my agreement in time, or a proposal of changes making the charter viable also for a priest and little friar.
We might have little time, but need to be thorough. So when can I start?

I assume, that the charter is still Triamore p.34f, right?

Assuming that Frère Sulpice has gone through the document of Triamore p.34f, he will address Remi about the following issues at once:
There are two exclusions in the charter, which no Christian in his right mind would ever accept:
"... shall honor and defend the Tribunal and the Order in all affairs and above all other matters." is setting up Tribunal and Order as idols, and thereby voiding the charter.
"... and that he owes no allegiance nor fealty to any other Covenant or other body such as shall contravene his good oath to this Covenant, ..." is made most unclear by "or other body". Every Christian owes allegiance to the Church - which is by no means a Covenant in the sense of the Code of Hermes.
Both phrases likely do not say what the authors mean, and can be easily amended to e. g. "... shall honor and defend the Tribunal and the Order in all affairs." and "... and that he owes no allegiance nor fealty to any other Covenant or similar body such as shall contravene his good oath to this Covenant, ...".
It also might make sense to list after the signatures also the allegiances of the signataries, like priest and little friar, so as to make sure these do not contradict the charter and have not been hidden to the other signataries.

Yannis smiles wryly a Sophie and nods "The Oath of Hermes, in its current form, is a magical oath as you have surmised."

He then motions Morris over. "I shall need the services of a reader who can also act as a scribe. I pray Triamore can provide such an individual from its staff? Unlike my learned childhood friend yonder I never completed my apprenticeship and so I never learned my letters. And though I doubt anything has changed in the Oath of Hermes since its re-discovery, I am unfamiliar with Charter of the Covenant of Triamore."

While waiting for documents and books to come forward, Frère Sulpice addresses Sophie in French: Speaking the Oath of Hermes is part of an initiation into a system of magical defense. It is very old and was meant to keep the old Order of Hermes from self-destructing: a purpose it did not fulfill. It is told, that violating the Oath, once taken in the initiation, can have immediate consequences.

But the Oath is very reasonable. It is mainly concerned with regulating the life in the Order proper and assuring mutual respect within it. The outside relations of its members are restricted in obvious ways, that prohibit behaviour endangering the Order and its members: like dealing with devils, molesting the fay, and involving those outside the Order in disputes within it.

As a Christian but not nearly so knowledgeable as Frère Suplice, Sophie listens intently to his comments about potential issues with allegiances and the church. She has nothing to contribute, but she thanks him afterward for his insight.

After Yannis and Frère Sulpice explain the Oath of Hermes to her Sophie replies, "I will have to look carefully as this oath. I am familiar with similar oaths made with faeries. I have no problem making reasonable allegiances, but I am always careful to examine the magical parts of any such bargain."

The covered wagon slowly makes it way up the slight hill leading to the entrance of the incomplete castle called Lucien's folly by the locals. The driver, an mature man wearing a padded vest, cracks his whip to keep the pair of oxen pulling the wagon moving as the right wheel hits a larger-than-susual pot hole. The shock reverberates through the carriage, raising a cry from inside.

"WHAT IS THIS!!! Maurits, are you trying to kill me AGAIN!"

The driver sighs and grumbles inaudibly, before answering in a loud voice, but not quite a yell. "We're there, master."

"THERE? WHAT DO YOU MEAN, THERE!" The tarp seperating the covered part from the driver's bench is thrown aside and a round head emerges. "WHERE ARE..." The speaker interrupts himself when he catches sight of the approaching gate of Triamore. In a much normal tone of voice, he says, "Oh. OH! We've arrived! At last! Why didn't you tell me, you befuddled eater of half-cooked batracians? Never mind that. Good! EXCELLENT! Now, WHERE are my formal robes..." The head disappears back into the wagon.

A few minutes later, the wagon stops before the gate and the driver tells the guard in accented Waloon, "Master Boniface of Ghent arriving to see the masters of Triamore. I believe he is expected." He looks back at the covered section, then shrugs. "Though I wouldn't be surprised if the fat slug forgot to tell them when he'd be arriving."

The guard laughs before signaling the wagon into the courtyard. Maurits cracks his whip again to coax the oxen in motion again, and soon the wagons is rolling under the gatehouse and into the outer bailey. It finally comes to a jerking stop before the the great hall. There is a loud crash from inside the wagon, followed by cursing. A small smile graces Maurits' taciturn face, but is quickly gone. He dismounts the wagon and makes his way to the back, where he pulls out an empty wooden box from the back of the wagon. A sturdy wooden box.

The tarp in the back is thrown open by a large pudgy hand. "AH! HELP me down, will you?" With some grunting and help from Maurits, the occupant steps down on the box as a step down from the wagon, then looks around at the courtyard.

The man is quite a sight, with burnt orange robes covering his bulk but not succeeding in hiding the expanse of the belly, while greenish-blue pants peek out from under the robes. The bare head is bald, while the well-shaven face wears a happy expression. From a well-shaped mouth comes a loud greeting, "HELLO TRIAMORE!!! IT IS SO VERY GOOD TO BE BACK!!!"

With the rotund and gaudy man delivered to the ground of the Triamore bailey, a handsome, green-eyed young woman in men's traveling clothes and a big dagger grabs her heavy panier and jumps from the wagon's box.
She takes off her floppy hat adorned by a spoon and a red feather in salute to him and says in Latin: Thanks for the ride! I guess that Maurits didn't wish to disturb you more than necessary. So I catch this occasion to introduce myself: I am Honorine Filia of Honors and a Redcap of the Order of Hermes.
Then she looks around.
As the guard appears to be the only servant of Triamore approachable, she calls out to him in the French of the channel coast: Please call the masters of Triamore and tell them, that Master Boniface of Ghent brought Honorine the Redcap with letters and books from Paris with him!

Boniface answers in Latin as well, switching from the Waloon (a dialect of French) he used to address the courtyard, "And greetings to you as well, young lady!!!" He bows to her in accompaniement to his words. "Always happy to be of service to the Redcaps! You mentioned books? May I be so bold as to ask the title and subject of these?"

Honorine hesitates, then answers: Master Boniface, thank you very much for the interest in my duty! Might I recommend, that you ask my load's adressees about its specifics?
While she is speaking, she looks around the bailey and towards the entries of the great hall.

"AH! Of course! Of course!" Bonifaces laughs, "I wouldn't want to impinge on the sacrosanct inviolability of the redcap's duties!"

If Honorine has no protection against the effects of the Gift, she cannot help but notice that Boniface's presence is quite overpowering, something she's noticed with the Gift of some magi.

Honorine needs to collect herself indeed, before replying It is the same inviolability we provide to your communications! I thank you for your appreciation!
As Maurits crosses her gaze, she quickly looks elsewhere.

Looking around to see if anyone is coming to greet them, and seeing no welcome commitee, Boniface shrugs before saying, "Well! They must be busy! Let us try to find Morris, then! Come, come!"

Noticing perhaps Honorine's discomfort, Boniface stops and asks, in a softer tone, "Are you all right? Wait, what an idiot I am! I am sorry! Would you like me to extend my Parma to you? I am told that my Gift can be somewhat unpleasant to others."

Honorine graciously declines with a somewhat puzzled look at Boniface: Thank you, I am used to all kinds of Gift since many years. Then she shoulders her pannier and marches towards the inner bailey. I've ... heard ... that there are visitors here: so people might indeed be engaged. Let's see with what! As she passes the half-completed open gate between the baileys, she calls out Master Boniface and Honorine the Redcap entering! and looks out for further guards and their reactions at the gate or the keep's tower.

After retreiving a staff from the wagon, Boniface catches up with Honorine as she pauses just inside the gate. "Such energy! Not ususual for someone with your vocation as a redcap, and commendable indeed." Looking into the inner bailey and not seeing anything out of the ordinary, the rotund magus points to the ramp leading into the castle, "Morris is probably in the foyer. Let us see what sort of game is afoot!"

He then makes his way in that direction, using his staff to help him along the even footing of the inner bailey. Before they are even inside, he is calling out cheerfully and loudly, "MASTER MORRIS!!! MORRIS! ARE YOU IN HERE?"

OOC NOTE: we are using th eedited covenant charter proposed by OneShot, but I will introduce here some stuff to clear the confusion.

Remi listens to all the queries intently and seems eager to please. When frere Sulpice goes on a rant on the quasi-heretic text he is clearly enjoying himself. Well, that would be Isabelle, our librarian, playing tricks on you. Hahah, what a woman! The charter that you received is not the current charte rof the covenant, but an older copy. I am sure she made a copy with the current date on it just to make things weird for you. She has this thing about men of the cloth. He handles each one of you a parchment containing the charter of the covenant. This would be the updated version of what our librarian showed you. As you can see the issues that concern you were addressed more than 70 years ago. It is not that the previous magi were heathens, but more than they were writing in good faith and not under a strict legal point of view. The charter was amended to clarify their intentions when it was challenged by advocates of the Order and the Church.

In any case sodales friar we do not expect you to be a "knight" in the sense of fighting the enemies of the covrnant from horseback using a lance! Haha. There are other people more suitable for that role. For triamore a mark of honor and responsibility, not of fighting prowess. If you decide to join us we are sure your abilities will be suitable in other battlefields, battlefields that are not necessarily less deadly than the physical ones. The same goes for the rest of you. He looks specially at Sophie here and bows slightly to her. His words seem clear considering that he dresses and seems to behave like a mundane knight for what you know. Only a tattoo of a wolf head in his neck, something unusual, marks him as potentially something else.

If any of you decides to decline our invitation to join the covenant we will put forward another offer for associated status, so you can enjoy some of the benefits of the covenant and we hope that in time will decide to become full members. In the meantime me and Morris will be available if you have any queries about Triamore proper, our holdings and resources or the lands about.

Note: as a house rule, I am making Aegis suppress the negative effects of The Gift. It is one of the reasons why magi like to stay at their covenants. It also means that inside an Aegis it is difficult to say if someone is a magus or not, and that the "away" teams of covenants tend to be less loyal. This serves to justify people interacting normally even if some of the characters are Gifted and did not know each other before

In the bailey people seem to be stopping their activities to observe the newcomers and the flurry of grandiose antics they are performing. The boy that Boniface has addressed runs into the inner bailey (if that can be its name: only a low wall foundation is in place, with some chickens roosting on it) and disappears into the main keep.

As Remi is talking to you you all hear a ruckus coming from the outer bailey through the half open door. A kid comes in running through the door connecting to the keep, and after a small bow approaches Remi and tells something to his ear. Thank you Pierre. Seems more of our guests have arrived. We were not expecting them today, but we can receive them. Fetch them in.

As the pair of newcomers enter the foyer a pair of house maids bow and disappear scurry into the upper floor. you see Morris appear through the library door and greet you formally. Welcome to Triamore mylord and mylady. We were expecting you. may I serve you a refreshment after your trip? he gesturs to a small girl that runs downstairs, proably to fetch some wartered down wine and snacks. If not, the lord of the house will receive you in the great hall once you are ready.

Frere Sulpice chuckles and answers: I am impressed by your librarian. My compliments! She not only knows, where the valid copies are. No, she also knows the little problems of Triamore's history well enough to make a good joke of them at the right time! She will certainly be an excellent aide for problems hailing from recent changes in canon law as well. Please ask her, whether the decisions of the 4th council of the Lateran, which our prince bishop has helped to make, are arriving from Paris!
Then he bows to Remi. Given, that I am already a member if the Order of Hermes, I have no problems to help my sodales in maintaining this place of learning and join their covenant.

(Written on a mobile phone in a train.)

As Honorine is shown in, she looks around in the room, draws her hat and bows, then speaks briefly in Latin: I am Honorine Filia of Honors, RedCap of the Order of Hermes and detailed to Triamore. I bring letters and books from Paris for Daria, Remi and Sulpicius.

(Written also in the train.)

A rotund figure follows Honorine into the council chamber. The blad man is dressed in burnt orange robes with greenish-blue pants peeking out from under the robes.

"Master Remi! So good to see you again! It has been, what, almost ten years now? How is Mistress Daria?" He approach the senior magus to shake his hand.

Turning to the newcomers, he exclaims, "And who are these? New members of the covenant? How magnificient! I am Boniface of Ghent, philosopher of Chartres, responding to the invitation of Triamore." Turning back to Remi, his tone is more somber, he adds, "I was very sorry to hear that Aline had passed away. You have my condoleances."

Boniface then moves to an empty chair and sits down, smiling at everyone.

EDIT: Removed the references to Daria being present, as she left before Boniface and Honorine arrived.

Sophie listens to Remi carefully, keeping some of the prior things she has heard in mind. "I would be happy to take the oath, though I do not fully understand the magic it provides." (OOC - Those who met her outside will know she either has the Gentle Gift or no Gift at all.)

With the commotion, she turns to pay attention to whatever is going on. Sophie rises as the new people arrive. She politely replies, "Pleased to meet you both, though I have no idea what a Redcap is. I am Sophie, the local 'wise one' and 'faerie doctor.'"