Prelude for Torros of Jerbiton

“It´s another member of the Order. I fear he will follow me. This is all I can say at the moment.”

"Will, if you say so. Still, you might want to speak to master Philippus at some point, just so that he is aware of a potential threat. He might get cross if you don't." Turning to the grog she adds, "Nidung, later. Work now." The limping grog bobs his head in acquiescence, "Yes, Sula!" and goes back inside the mill.

Turning back to Torros, the old wrinkled woman asks, "Now, master, you say you did not announce your arrival. How long will you be staying? Whom would you like to speak to?"

“As I said I won´t stay for long. I think we will stay just a few days.
My main interest is the great library.
And if one of the Magi would find the time to show me this historical and extremely impressing site I´m happy.”

"A few days, you say? Hmmm, we should be able to find you some guest quarters. Your servants, though," she eyes Hans and Franz, "will have to sleep with the other covenfolk."

"As for visiting the library, you will have to speak to master Andrus. All things pertaining to the Library goes through him. Would you like me to arrange for a meeting?"

“Yes please arrange a meeting with master andrus.
Guest quarters for me and a place by the covenfolk for Hans and Franz is all we need. Thank you.”

Torros is soon settled into a guest room and his grogs are sent to the grogs quarters. Upon learning that it is his first time at Durenmar, Sula arranges for him to be led on a quick tour of the covenant's grounds. This duty is performed by an apprentice, for apparently very few mundanes are allowed to visit the part of the covenant to the south of the small stream that splits the valley in two.

Just on the other side of the small bridge crossing the stream is a large standing stone that was erected by Notatus at the site where the first ever casting of the Aegis of the Hearth ritual,
which he invented, took place. As you get there, a young magus named Ricardus officially welcomes you to the covenant and grant you a token for the Aegis. He then leaves you to your guide.

First you are shown the Forum, where magi from all over the Tribunal gather every seven years for the Rhine Tribunal meeting, as do the representatives from all the tribunals and the Primi when comes time for the Grand Tribunal. The building is impressive, a miniature amphitheater with enough seating space for over a hundred magi. Marble steps, flanked by statues of the Twelve Founders, lead to a central speaking are with a mosaic floor apparently left over from a Roman temple. The apprentice tells you that the original Oath of Hermes was taken here by the Founders. All around the seats reserved for the magi, ancient Roman-style gateways stand. These, the apprentice says, are magical portals leading to the most important covenants of the Order. Two smaller arches are apparently used to create temporary portals using ritual spells. Another arch is more enigmatic, being composed of living wood. The apprentice apologizes but says he doesn't know what that one does.

After crossing to the south side of the valley, the apprentice brings you to the Tower of Bonisagus, which hosts the Great Library. You don't go inside, as you still have to speak to Andrus before you are allowed to, but the exterior is quite interesting by itself. Your guide tells you that the tower was first created over four centuries ago by the Founder himself, the first ever casting of the famed spell Conjuring the Mystic Tower. The tower is perfectly round, 80 feet high, and 30 feet across. It remains perfectly proportioned and structurally sound, if somewhat weathered by the centuries, as a testament to Bonisagus’ skill. At the base of the tower grows a huge and ancient magical vine, planted by the Founder Merinita as a gift to Bonisagus. It spreads up and around the entire height of the tower, branching often, and in sections actually winding inside the building. The smell of the spring blossoms is sweet, almost cloying. A huge fir tree also grows some distance behind the tower, standing apart from the Black Forest itself, but the apprentice doesn't mention anything about it.

The tour continues along the path towards the east, where two more towers rise. The Tower of Notatus, raised by the first Primus of House Bonisagus and bearing his name, houses most of the magi of the covenant. The Tower of Trianoma is shorter than the other two towers, with a crooked and ruined top. When you ask, your young guide explains that its has been like that since a magical accident destroyed the top two floors, long ago. This tower houses magi of the lineage of Trianoma as well as some of the non-Bonisagi members of the covenant and the occasional peregrinator.

Even farther south, stangin apart from the massive towers, you are shown the Verditius’ Forge, built by Verditius himself and now the laboratory of the Artificer of Durenmar, Gudrun. It is
an unobtrusive structure, partially underground, covered by a grassy bank on one side leading up to its roof.

(Seven days and no reaction to the last message, so I am assuming that Torros has no questions about what he was shown.)

In the evening, you are brought a note by a different apprentice. It is from Andrus, the head librarian, who mentions he will see you the next evening at the library.

OCC: Sorry for my late reply my first child was born last week :smiley:
I decided to stay in the hospital with my wife and our baby for the first days. Now we all back home

My plan was to do some small talk with my guide. But we can skip that.

Torros will make sure to be right in time for the appointment with Andrus. He will use the remaining time to find out (or remember) how much it will cost to copy a lab text or a tractatus. Also he is interested in a ritual to create a block of ice. Torros is well aware this might be behind his limits for the moment, but it´s nice to know where copy a lab text for it.

(OOC: Congrats on the new father status!)

(We can assume some amount of small talk during the tour. The apprentice seems a bit reserved, but otherwise answers the questions as best as he can.)

Torros seem to remember that the Great Library requires exchanges in kind -- so for most books it means contributing something to the library. Not something that young magi can do easily or often. You haven't heard much regarding lab texts. When you inquire with the apprentice giving you the tour, he says that some magi do copying work for the library, but that you should probably speak with master Andrus about that.

Is Torros doing anything else before his meeting with Andrus? He has a whole day to kill.

Without any concrete idea how to use the remaining time, Torros strolls about the area without any specific target. Unwittingly he walks over to the Forum of Hermes. Here he finds the statues of the twelve founders he will take his time to study the statues. After some moments he muses about to interpret them in ice. Spontaneously he tries to cast a CrIm without spending fatigue to sketch up a picture of the statue.
In case he is not successful without spending fatigue he spent one.
The spell should be level 3 only (Base 1, touch 1 conc 1).
The young magus performs some gestures and words and a live sized picture of Bonisagus carved out of a snow white ice appears in front of his outstretched fingers. Torros walks around the illusion, watching it intensive. A few diameter pass while he is fully concentrated on the illusion that represents his idea, finally the picture fades away. Torros says to himself: “Later! First I have to learn.”
After dusk Torros sets up his Pharma (as usual) and then makes his way to the library to meet Andrus.

If there is still some time after his walk he will also looking for some covenfolk or Magi around to conversation about the latest news in and around Durrenmar.

He quickly discovers that the covenfolk are quite subservient. Those he meets also seem... bland comes to his mind. A bit as if they were all cast from the same mold, or something like that. They don't seem to be interested in anything that is outside of their tasks and responsibilities, although they are quite resectful to Torros and listens to him patiently. But they simply answer his direct questions, not engaging him in even small talk with him.

As for magi, very few are to be found north of the stream or even at the Forum. He can see one or two going about his (or her) business in the distance, moving from one of the towers to another. Or perhaps these are apprentices. Hard to say.

Torros tries to get a list of Traktatus and Summae that can be copied by a scribe of Durrenmar and send out by a redcap. Maybe there is some sort of catalogue including prices for copies. Or maybe Torros sees this a bit idealistic and he will be disappointed.
He is willingly to prepare his own list using the card index of the library.
Just to check the opportunity he tries to find out how much it would cost in case he spends a season of learning in Durrenmar.
He expects it would be too expensive and is mostly interested in traveling more North. On the other hand this might be a good change to spend some time in the famous library….
After the meeting with Master Andrus he will know more and make his decision.

The mundane scribes that you can meet on the first level of the library look at you strangely when you mention a 'catalog' of the books. They refer you back to the Head Librarian regarding request for copies of books or access to the library. When Torros inquires as to hat the scribes are currently doing, they explain that these are notes from the previous Tribunal meeting, being assembled and put together for future reference.

(OOC: Although catalogs and card indexing are not necessarily a modern concept, they were not standard in the period. They are useful to handle large libraries, which were not so common at the time. So each library tended to develop its own system of categoization of books.)

Torros waits for Master Andrus to express his request to him.
OCC: We can skip the details if you want.

The interview with Andrus, the Head Librarian of Durenmar, proves to be a bit disappointing. The thin and balding magus is quite inflexible. Aside from the Tribunal records, which anyone has a right to access, usage of the library is a privilege that must be earned. "Those who study from the Great Library must also contribute to the Great Library," Andrus intones, much as if he were quoting an evident truth. Was there anything that Torros could contribute to the library? If he wished to scribe an oroginal text of lab text for the library, that would earn him to right to study for a season or two, depending on the value of his contribution. Or he could provide a season of scribing services to earn a season of access to the library. "And donation of vis are of course always welcomed," Andrus concludes.

Torros is considering the time needed to copy his lab text “The artwork of ice”. He assumes this should be possible in less than 1 Moon.
If he earns 1 season access to the great library that’s seems to be a good deal. Additionally it is honor to contributing a text to the library.

“Master Andrus, the only thing I can contribute beside of ordinary vis is an unique Lab Text of 4th Magnitude. I will have to re write it down to make it better understandable.”
Torros gives a brief description of the spell to Andrus
“Would this Lab text be enough to let me study a season in the great library?”

Indeed, a lab text of this spell would be sufficient to allow Torros to study for a season from the library.

(OOC: Note that studying from the library does not give you access to a lab, so if the plan is to learn some spells, you will need to arrange to get access to a lab as well. Otherwise, you might be able to make a copy of the lab texts of the spells you are looking for and learn them at a later date.)

“A good Aquam Tractatus would be suitable for me. If I and my grogs will get free accommodation and food for the time I need to copy the lab text and study for a season we have an agreement.” :slight_smile:

"Accomodations?" says Andrus, "That would be out of my purview. You should talk to the stewards about that. This is completely out of my control, so I cannot provide you with that part. Furthermore, I have no idea what the availabilities are for lodging. I only handle the library itself."