The Triamore gambit


I think that the Triamore business is starting to look like an In Character stuff, and goes WAAAAAAAY beyond the development of Quercus and into the actual shapping of our covenant. As such, I am compiling the posts on Quercus going to Triamore here and will continue it here. Hope that you are all OK with it. First adventure of our saga. Yay! :smiley:

It seems that lab assistance is the best best Quercus can get. I have an idea for the item that I want to keep up my sleeve. I am seeing opportunities in this visit to Triamore. Maybe we can end up with a friendly covenant as well as a supplier.

I ask the senior magi if I could get my 4 years worth of assistance transformed into other kinds of assets if I helped the senior maga in the lab (I assume that means Daria or Remi). I will require using part of the 4 years they would provide me with a lab for a time, but I prefer to get other assets instead, like copies of Roots, Magic theory summae, tractatus and lab texts. I am also maintaining my offer to help with wooden construction and repairs around. I point out that I saw that the roof would do well to receive a few day's of magical attention. If they do not accept the exchange of service for books, I ask if it would be possible to divide the 4 years in several shorter periods of time to be used in the future.

(Agreed, so I moved this post from the original thread also.)

Note that the covenants are larger than described in sourcebooks, so there may be another senior magus or two at the covenant. Also note that your value as a lab assistant is relatively low (you provide a +5 only, unless I missed something), so it benefits a junior magus much more than a senior one. Unfortunately, they have less resources to share and less influence on the covenant's decisions.

The senior magus/maga is less then enthused with the possibility of splitting up the time or converting it to other kinds of resources. Copies of books might be arranged, but they would require you to contribute a book of your own, at least, in addition to the lab assistance. Although the trade need not be one-for-one. "Much less efficient than what I offer you, sodalis," the magus/maga says. "Your offers of help to fix the roof and other repairs is appreciated, but that mostly benefits the mundanes, not the magi. They might be worth some mundanes resources in exchange, such as money or some lab equipment, or perhaps copies of mundane books."

Ah, more magi in Triamore, got it.

"I can provide a book on the possibilities that oak offers as a constructing wood. The uses are many, and it has shown to be a strong wood yet suprisingly supple to magical manipulation while resistant to lightning. This might be interesting to the covenant, I assume. Being my area of interest I have checked the Great Library for similar books, and while there are some dated texts on the matter, no one seems to have covered this in the past 200 years in any details. We would all agree that magic theory has advanced significantly during this period, so I think I can offer a much more current look on these matters. Triamore would be left with the property of such a book but I would require a copy for my own use.

While the repairs favor the mundane laborers, the labs of the senior magi seem to be in the upper parts of the castle, so I assume you would all benefit from better repairs. JHowever, I offer to do that job as a favor if that would allow me to flex your position on the conversion of my free seasons of covenant usage for books on the hermetic arts and magic theory".

"A tractatus on the subject would make a nice addition to the library. Would you write provide us a copy under a Cow and Calf clause, or would we be free to make our own copies? The second is more valuable to us, of course, and would grant you either study access to the common library for a season, or to a laboratory for a season, in addition to providing your yearly service. In either case, we would ask that you refrain from making the tractatus available to other magi for a period of seven years."

"Pfff. The roof of our laboratories and personal quarters do not leak, we make sure of that. The mundanes complain, of course, about theirs, but that is of little concern to us magi. My own laboraroty is underground, in any case. Certainly not worth magical resources or knowledge. Let us not mix fool's gold with the real thing, sodalis."

EDIT: The one you are negociating with is Aline of Bonisagus, who is a man despite the feminine (at least in French) first name.
EDIT 2: Added some text (in italics) to the last paragraph.

Ah, I know him. Regiones and auras expert, hermetic architecture. Chaotic magic. Nice. Yes, underground lab, so my argument sucks if I am talking to him :mrgreen:

I can grant you a copy of the tractatus not protected by the calf and cow oath. I would not object to it being distributed if Triamore thinks it is in your interest to do that. I also agree to the 7 period without selling copies of it. We have a deal here.

I will also like to see some mundane resources for my help on Herbam repairs and construction around the covenant. I am sure that your castellan can find uses for improved wood manufacture. We can negotiate the details once you inspect the results, since I prefer you thinking you got a fair deal than thinking you are giving more than what you are receiving. I plan this relationship to prosper and keep growing in the future."

I read the part about the underground after selecting him and making my argument, which is why I added that part in.

And if you wonder why he seems so uncaring of the mundanes when his description states that he was "always friendly and generous with the servants and grogs", I have a theory that as magi gain Warping, the become... not exactly disconnected, but rather... distanced from human emotions and the mundane world. So he is still friendly and generous, but much like he would be with a loyal dog.

That theory helps explain why the Order evolved like it did in this saga. It is not widely held or known, but some Jerbiton adhere to it to the point that as they begin to experience this level of distancing, they prefer not to renew their longevity ritual and die naturally rather than keep losing their humanity (as they see it).

"Good! I shall inform the librarian of the deal, and he will arrange for copies of the agreed-upon books. But just to be clear, it is not simply seven years without making copies, it is seven years before you make it available to any magus, so that we have exclusivity for that period. In exchange for which, since the tractatus will not be covered by the Cow and Calf clause, we will provide you with copies of three tractatus, or one copy of a mid-level summa, at your choice. These will be covered by the Cow and Calf, so you will not be allowed to make copies."

If you agree to these terms, just let me know your choice of 3 tractatus or 1 summa, and for what Arts and/or Abilities. Some may not be available, such as Parma Magica (copies of Parma books are strictly controlled).

Aline seems uninterested in this subject, but simply says, "Of course, of course. Talk to the castellan, I am sure he will be amenable to this. He has full knowledge and authority in such matters."

Let me know what you think the worth of this would be.

Just to be clear: my full year + tractatus on Herbam grant me 3 tractatus or a single suma from their library? Or does the year of service grant me more books? :open_mouth: If I am correct it is a low resources saga indeed. :open_mouth:

In the 4th edition book Triamore was not described as having much mundane wealth, so some silver might be OK, but not much. I would prefer to get the materials for a basic lab instead if that is possible. If not, a tractatus on something might be a good exchange.

How do I value spell texts?

You are essentially correct:

  • You pay: 4 seasons of lab service + 1 season of authoring service not covered by Cow and Calf
  • You get: up to 4 years of living there, 1 well-scribed copy of your tractatus, 3 well-scribed tractatus or 1 well-scribed summa, 1 season of study access to the common library.

Had you not provided the year of lab service, they would have exchanged the tractatus on a one-to-one basis (no chance of a summa) and not provided the scribing for all copies (yours and theirs). Your lab service also covered for the 3 pawns/year of living expenses for the duration of your stay. And care for your grog when he was wounded adventuring with you.

Junior covenant members get a slightly better deal. They get a lab and common library access without having to pay for them. But they still need to perform covenant services.

But yes, it is harsh by the standards of the usual saga. :mrgreen:

Still, your two years as described in your charater thread will give you 24 xp and 20 levels of spells, in addition to some books and various materials. That is a bit lower (20%) xp-wise than would usually be the case using the core book's simple rules post-Gauntlet, but you receive tangible rewards as well.

There must be an incentive to become a member of an existing covenant, otherwise all young magi would leave and wander from one covenant to another. That is the price to pay for freedom.

The castellan is very happy with your item, so he scrounges up almost all of the equipment required for a lab. It has a few of the more expensive tools and materials missing, but it is enough to setp up a lab that will only impose a -1 to lab totals.

OK. I get that I cannot get additional lab texts or books instead of the 16 seasons worth of living there that I get.

Instead of a medium Summa, can I get roots instead? Roots are low level, so I suppose I could try to negotiate for 3 of them instead of the tractatus given my williness to work for them? (One can only hope). Tractatus are great, and can be useful to any magus, while roots should be the most widely available books in the order, so no great value books for established covenants, no?

In my time there I also try to make a point towards showing how good will and collaborative efforts are getting all of us in a better position than before we started.

To me, a mid-level summa is worth about 20 bp, with the Level between 8 and 12.

So a L5Q15 root has pretty much the same value. So yes, you can get a Root, but it is the equivalent of the summa, not one of the tractatus. Roots offer less xp in total, but are great time-savers. It is a trade-off. They are still much more valuable than a tractatus, as you get twice the amount of xp that your average tractatus would give you in the same time.

As for the time you remain at Triamore, there is nothing preventing you from staying there one more year. :mrgreen: It is your magus' choice to leave, and he may not have known that he'd depart so soon when he negociated the deal.

Ok, make it a suma instead of a root, then. I was assuming that roots would come at a discount. I prefer level 10 at most (8 as preferred) if I can have a say in this. I would like it being in Intellego.

I will consider spending some more time in the covenant. I assume I need more vis to get library and lab access. Will the extra seasons that I have available (8) be available later on if I leave now and return later?


The Underlying Principles of Thaumaturgical Perceptions, by Cataractus of Jerbiton, Intellego Summa (L9Q12)

Those seasons will remain available for 7 years after your departure so yes, if you return at a later date your yearly fee will be covered.

Great. I will count them as available resources then.