The Day's Blank Slate: Beatrix (1220.1)

The night of March 7-8 a cloud moves mysteriously across the sky. Those who can see the distance well enough and make things out in the dark can tell it is actually a large flock, and an odd flock being one of Eurasian eagle owls. Flying as they do, the cloud moves quietly across the distant sky, but not with the wind which is mostly why it would look odd. There are certainly over a hundred of them, but not likely a thousand. Yet the cloud hides something more mysterious.

A bit before dawn the cloud descends toward the covenant and breaks apart. As the owls scatter outward somewhat to form a wide ring, they reveal what they had been hiding above them: a dragon (Size +7) carrying passengers riding bare-back. One of the passengers is the young, brunette woman known as Bea. Behind her are three children, decreasing in age, followed by an older woman. After the dragon alights in the middle of the ring, Bea descends to the ground and hugs the dragon. [color=blue]{Saxon} "Remain with Günther until I return." The eldest child, a teenage girl, seems content to listen to her mother and remain. The little boy behind her tries to slide down off the dragon to follow his mother but is unable to move his buttocks. The toddler behind him doesn't have much of a clue and just has wide eyes, but is held just as securely while being looked over by the nursemaid behind him. For those who can see clearly enough the maga, the eldest girl, and the nursemaid all have odd eyes, appearing more like an owl's eyes than human.

The maga, wearing her customary red cap, strides toward the covenant slowly, waiting to feel the tingle so as not to cross the Aegis. She waits for someone to appear if she does not immediately spot someone. [color=blue]{Hermetic Latin} "Salve. I am Redcap Beatrix ex Mercere. I believe I am expected."

It's pretty hard to sneak up on someone when you're riding a dragon roughly the size of a diplodocus. The fact that they're only two days removed from the new moon means that they almost pull it off. Beatrix and her family are met by a squad of grogs shortly after they land; the coisridh look like they're overwhelmed by the prospect of having to face an obviously-dead-but-is-it-really-my-God-I-have-no-bloody-idea dragon. Their minds are put somewhat at ease by Beatrix's greeting.

"The magi are on their way, maga," one of them finally squeaks out, his eyes still fixed on Günther.

One of the other grogs mutters a question in Gaelic to a squadmate, who mutters another question in reply in the same tongue.

It's not long before two woman arrive, accompanied by a couple more grogs. One is apparently middle-aged, with brown hair, and dressed in simple woolen robes and leather shoes. The other is younger and blonde, wearing a red cloak wrapped around her night-gown and wearing cloth slippers. They are walking quickly, but come to a stop when they reach Beatrix and the others.

[color=red]"You must be Beatrix," the blonde says. [color=red]"I am Boudicca of Bonisagus, and this," she continues as she gestures to the other woman, [color=red]"is Eliid of Bjornaer. Welcome to Insula Canaria."

(P.S. I feel like I'm missing something with the birds.)

Beatrix waits patiently. Most the children seem anxious but cannot free themselves from their perches. The dragon looks about somewhat warily. The owls are eerily calm, far too still.

{Accented Latin} "Yes, I am Redcap Beatrix ex Mercere. Well met and thank you. I am glad we have arrived. It has been a long but uneventful ride; I will need to see to my children. Is there a place we can stay for a time as a family? And a place Günther could stay without frightening even more covenfolk at the moment?"

(OOC: They're all corpses, created and animated entirely by magic. Can't be a necromancer and show up with just one corpse when you could show up with hundreds. :wink: )

The guards watch the dragon, with occasional glances at the owls. The longer they wait, the more they're visibly jittery.

Boudicca looks like she's about to speak, when Eilid interrupts. [color=brown]"Does it still eat?" she says, the excitement evident in her voice. She holds up the palm of her hand and is quickly holding a ball of bright light (as bright as a cloudy day) and approaches Günther. [color=brown]"Did you make him yourself, or did you find him, or..."

[color=red]"Eilid! There will be plenty of time to pester the poor woman with questions after she and her children have settled in. Now...I'm sure we can find you at the very least a vacant cottage until we get you settled into a sanctum, or have one made for you.

"About Günther...we don't have anything available to house him in. We can start having something built for him in the next couple of days, but until it's finished..." Boudicca shrugs.

facepalm I should have thought of that.

[color=blue]"I'm sure Günther would be quite willing to talk to you, and all the more so if you feed him..."

As Eilid approaches Günther he says in similarly accented Latin, [color=red]"Greetings maga."

[color=blue]"That would be appreciated. We would not need anything permanent for Günther; we will build a large enough lab soon enough, as discussed in the letters. Also, do you have tokens to your Aegis?

[color=brown]"Greetings, Günther," Eilid says in Latin, before she switches to Low German. [color=brown]"Is that a German accent I hear?"

She switches back to Latin. [color=brown]"What do you eat?"

Eilid and Boudicca look at each other for a moment before Eilid sighs. [color=brown]"I'll go get some," she says before she heads toward the covenant, using a Palm of Flame to light her way. She returns a short while later with token for both Beatrix and Günther and formally invites them both into the Aegis.

Günther replies in Low German (Saxon), [color=red]"Yes, we have come from the Rhine Tribunal. It was an easy flight." To her second question he replies, [color=red]"I will eat nearly anyone... er, anything." Was that a slight draconic chuckle that slipped out Günther's lips after that comment? The children seem more amused than worried after that comment. [color=red]"Anything new is especially good, but anything fine is good. All the better if it has been seasoned with Vis."

While Eilid is gone the children start sliding off Günther's back one by one in order of seniority, though the nursemaid descends before the toddler. They take their turns hugging Günther near his head. They seem experienced enough to know not to skewer themselves on any of his spines. While the nursemaid gets the two youngest in tow, the older girl walks over to wait beside her mother.

When Eilid returns Beatrix says, [color=blue]"Eilid, may I introduce you to my eldest, Lili. She is the one you had asked to meet. Her slightly younger brother is in his Redcap apprenticeship. She has chosen a different route, more similar to her mother's. She hopes to be of service here."

Elisabeth curtsies. [color=green]"Magas Eilid and Boudicca, it is a pleasure to meet you both. My mother has seen I have been trained in Magic Theory. I would be happy to work on the laboratory for any mage here for for the covenant. My wages are quite reasonable, but a pawn a season." She speaks with wisdom and confidence beyond her fourteen years, clearly having become a young adult before fully physically maturing.

[color=brown]"I'm sure you all will be a fine welcome to Insula Canaria. Especially if you," she smiles at Elisabeth, [color=brown]"are as talented as your mother makes you out to be. I would like to examine you once you're settled in. I know there are times I could use another hand in the laboratory, and I'm sure the other magi could, as well."

[color=red]We have a number of guest cottages that we can put you and your family in tonight," Boudicca says. [color=red]"Once you're rested, we can show you Insula Canaria, find you more permanent housing, and decide what to do with Günther. Does he need shelter right away?"

Lili replies, [color=green]"Of course, Maga Eillid. Whenever you wish." The small teenager curtsies and steps back from the conversation.

At some point later, assuming Eillid does choose to examine her, Lili shows up. Eillid finds Lili understands magic theory fairly well (4 plus a specialty in laboratory construction). She could work on laboratories, though she could not assist anyone in the lab. She is intelligent and good at explaining what she knows about magic theory. She is also able to identify a lot of magic (Magic Sensitivity), making her a little more useful around the magic within a lab.

Beatrix replies, [color=blue]"Thank you for your hospitality. Günther will be able to look after himself for the time being, but hopefully I can provide him space to be with us shortly."

Bea turns to Lili. [color=blue]"Get the others to join us." She turns back to Eillid, [color=blue]"If you wouldn't mind giving me but a short bit here..." As Lili heads back to Günther to make sure everyone is on their way with their packs, Beatrix stands still and focuses for a few minutes. Then the entire parliament of owls takes off and scatters. They disappear into trees not a huge distance from the covenant, spread around the covenant fairly evenly (excluding over the lake). Though probably impossible to see at that point, they alight on branches beside the trunks of trees as owls do. There they take up their jobs as sentries, though with all the arriving magi for the moment their command is just to stay put.

Once that is over, Bea talks to Günther for a moment than then leads her family to follow to their temporary quarters.

Eilid is suitably impressed. Although I'm not sure why Elisabeth can't assist anyone in the lab. You don't have to have the Gift to be a lab assistant - you just need Magic Theory (and preferably a non-negative Intelligence).

As they walk, Boudicca speaks with one of the guards, who heads to one of the longhouses. Before long, a tall brown-haired woman approaches the group and asks a question of Eilid in Gaelic. The maga replies briefly before she gestures to Beatrix.

[color=brown]"Beatrix, this is Saundra. She was the maidservant of a former maga of Insula Canaria, and speaks some Latin. If you have need of anything, let her know. Once you're settled and have signed the Charter, we will find you someone permanently."

Actually according to the rules, you do. Page 103 of ArM5 core rules sets forth the general rule:

This specifically says that you need the Gift to help in the lab.

Exceptions are made for Familiars:

and Failed Apprentices:

These have generally been interpreted as exceptions to the basic rule that you need the Gift to serve as a laboratory assistant.

Of course this is your saga, so you can choose to amend the rule. But the basic rule, as written, requires that you have the Gift to serve as a lab assistant.

Actually, it doesn't say you need the Gift. It says if you have the Gift, then you can assist in the lab. The converse, if you can assist in the lab then you have the gift, is not implied by the conditional statement. Also, this is seen in the rules as there are several other things (Trogdor noted two of them, though there are more.) that qualify you for assisting in the lab without having the Gift. Despite that, Trogdor's basic point is what is generally accepted. We disagree with the wording, but we're in agreement on the intention. There is no general rule for there to be exceptions to it. However, why list off things that specifically qualify you if everyone is qualified? The intention seems to be that not everyone is qualified. As for a general rule, it seems to be that if you are intimately connected to the Gift, then you can assist in the lab. But it has never been clearly spelled out what that close connection is, and with the line ending it never will be. We know of these in addition to having the Gift or Gifted: Familiars, Failed Apprentice, and faerie via Becoming (and I think at least one more, but I can't remember for sure).

Odd thought- would an ex familiar who's bond had been severed be able to act as a lab assistant?
Though personally I would expect anyone with a might score and magic theory should be able to assist.
maybe those with faerie blood can assist Marinita Magi?

I thought an ex familiar just died when the bond was severed so the question is moot.

Even that is doubtful for two reasons. First, most familiars have Magic Might, so the bond allowing them to assist in the lab would have the same issue: why bother pointing out that this becomes allowed if it already was. Second, beings with Magic Might can have or not have the Quality Gifted, which opens up this side of things. It would seem to step on that Quality to just allow all beings with Magic Might to assist in the lab.

Derp. I had forgotten that. (It's been a while since I've actually done anything with the rules, so apparently I'm a little rusty.) And I'm still trying to avoid House Rules as much as possible, so let's just keep going with the "Need the Gift except for these cases..." thing.

I'd have to check again, but I seem to remember that a Familiar whose bond is severed basically pines to death. And the magus suffers from severe Depression for a long time.

ArM 5 Core Rules, p. 105:

So not guaranteed death. But one wonders whether it would be in any condition to assist in a lab after losing its master.

(OOC - OK, looks like we're in agreement now. The rules allow for anyone with Magic Theory to work on a lab, just not to be an assistant. That is why Lili is trying to get hired to do lab construction. Later she'll also try to be hired to instruct beginning apprentices. )

Beatrix smiles at the new woman and replies, [color=blue]{Hermetic Latin} "Thank you both for the welcome. We will get settled in. Would it be possible to read the charter before the first meeting?"

(OOC - This reading of the charter was anticipated in the other thread.)

Beatrix leads her family to follow Saundra, explaining to them in Saxon that this is their new home but they will be in temporary quarters while there new house is built.

While not reading the charter or taking care of her family over the next days, Beatrix roams about to get familiar with the covenant's layout and to get a chance to chat with the other magi.

Gavin is also present and welcomes any opportunity to chat with his new sodales.

Bea introduces herself to Gavin in accented Latin, [color=blue]{Hermetic Latin} "Greetings. I take it you are one of the newly arrived magi, like me. I am Redcap Beatrix ex Mercere, Filia August, though I usually go by Bea. Was yours a long journey to get here?"

Bea is actually somewhat similar in description to a feminine version of Gavin, being pretty, small, not particularly strong, and much younger appearing than she actually is. Also, with his Strong Faerie Blood, his eyes are someone different; and Bea's eyes look a little glassy, not quite as though she is dead but getting there.