"I believe the official title is Inquisitor, Carmen," he says with a glance in her direction. he then turns to Marcellus, "I see. Well Marcellus, it is good to meet you. So what brings you to Andorra? We are a bit off of the beaten path, and you will have less exposure for your wares than if you were at a larger covenant."
Welcome to Andorra Marcellus, hope you survive the experience! (Autumn 1244)
"Greetings, Inquisitor Solomon. I just recently completed my Gauntlet and am looking for a covenant to join. As I have a preference for one located close to the Pyrenees, Andorra was suggested to me. Thus I came to visit and learn whether you would accept a youngster like myself, as well as the conditions of such an acceptance."
Marcellus goes a bit cross-eyed at Guiverna's attire and endowments. His average stature puts his eyes about level to her mouth, and they keep being pulled down at every movement the tall maga makes. He finally manages to look up, blushing furiously. His nervous smile reveal crooked teeth that have a slight yellowish tint.
"Greetings, maestra Guiverna. I am Marcellus of House Verditius, recently Gauntleted and looking for a covenant to join. I heard that Andorra might welcome a resident enchanter, even of limited experience."
Turning back to Solomon, he adds, "As for exposure for my creation, I am not overly worried about that. The fact that Andorra is connected to the Mercere portal network would be an advantage over the long term. But, short term, I am very much aware that most of my efforts will be spent improving my knowledge. So why not do that at a well-established covenant with a reknowned library?"
Fleur enters from the Sa Dragonna, takes a few monets to watch Guiverna, then looks around at the other people in the room. Fleur is wearing a short red dress of a material that has been formed into a few pleats and many slits, being off the shoulders with a low plunging neckline and short skirts slit past the hip on either side with a prominently displayed bosom despite not being so grand as Guiverna's. The first impression of her dress is that of either enticement or brazenness, depending on the temperment of the observer, but those who pay a bit more attention will realize it is designed to give the impression of an opening rose. She looks over Marcellus like she is contemplating lunch and listens to his conversations with the other magi who are present. Her looks are not as overwhelming as Guiverna's, she is modestly above average (presence 1) but aside from her fashion sense less overwhelming (gentle gift) , and it is readily apparent that the seductive nature of her clothing is a deliberate choice and not some incidental effect of mimicry of serpentine features.
"I recall a similar outlook when I first arrived, but do not mistake Andorra for some extended nursery of your development, there will be expectations of your contribution as well."
Carmen rolls her eyes and mutters unintelligibly. Then she shrugs and smiles.
Lucas is efficient. I was going to take Marcellus on a tour of the weird creepy stuff we keep in the basement. Take a peek on the other Marcellus, frozen and embedded deep in the Ice Cavern. You know, some of that old time nostalgia stuff. Have I ever given you guys the tour?
This should cause Solomon to at least raise an eyebrow. He knows that Carmen is trying to be open and inviting, as best she can. But he also knows she is trying to test his nerve. Solomon knows what's down there. As a Pontifex, he has the key to the Eternal Flame. He knows that a tour is reasonably safe if guided. But is probably best to avoid the Ice Cavern.
"A pleasure to meet you, Marcellus," Guiverna says with a smile. "Verditius? You must be very good with your hands."
Guiverna looks over Fleur's raiment, then nods approvingly. "Lovely outfit, ma Fleur"
Guiverna turns, "incidentally" brushing against Marcellus as she does. "You may have, some time ago, but it can't hurt to revisit it again. There's so much here, I'm sure there's things I missed the first time."
Marcellus is a bit overwhelmed by the simultaneous attention from so many senior magi at once. Of course, looking at them (particularly Guiverna and Fleur), none would dare use the term 'elders', but they definitively act as experienced magi.
In turn, he tries to answer their direct questions, as well as comments that can be contrued as such.
Marcellus seem unfazed by this not-so-subtke barb, "Of course, maestra... I am sorry, I did not catch your name? As both Pontifex Lucas and Pontifex Maxima Carmen will be able to witness, one of the first questions I asked was how I could contribute to the covenant's well-being. I may be young and inexperienced, but as a Verditius I have a unique skillset that can benefit your covenant. I mentioned the improvement of my knowledge, but I would never expect this to be a mountain stream, flowing in just one direction. The greater my knowledge, the better and greater the services I can provide to the covenant."
"For now, I am as eager to discover and demonstrate what I can do as I am to learn more. This, I have been told, is a balance that all magi just out of their Gauntlet must attain, if they are to prosper."
Though Carmen's comment is intriguing, Marcellus refrains from commenting on the secrets that appear to be hiding beneath the castle. For now, at least.
Though he blushes again, Marcellus' reply comes smoothly, "Not as good as you appear to be with your tongue, maestra Guiverna."
Fleur smiles "Oh I just love the subtle byplay. Sure I'd love to go plunging down into a dark wet cave with these two. Lovely to make your acquaintance Marcellus, I am Fleur of Bonisagus, my research specializes in reproduction." She winks at Guiverna "Love your outfit as well, are the scales textured?" she reaches towards the back of Guiverna's waist to feel the material if it seems she is welcome to do so.
Guiverna licks her lips slowly. "Oh, I like you. Can't wait to get to know you better."
Guiverna lifts her arms to let Fleur appreciate the whole garment. The material is not really textured, but every inch of the fabric is heavily embroidered with black thread to give the appearance of snake-scales.
"No scale texture, but this sure feels nice." Fleur looks Marcellus in the eyes while she feels the material at Guiverna's waist.
Marcellus just shrugs. Apparently, there is a limit to how much blushing innuendos can get out of him.
Turning back to Carmen, he asks on a more serious tone, "Pontifex Maxima, I would ask officially what the steps and conditions are for me to join this covenant."
I admire you ability to maintain composure. The process is straightforward. Right now, your official status is that of a Protected Guest. Unofficially, you are a Pledge. It takes a unanimous vote of the Council to make you a full member, tarting at the rank of Journeyman. The council may require up to three tasks or labors. They usually don't. Once your petition is submitted, the council must vote upon it within seven seasons. But it usually only a season or two. Traditionally, the council interviews you at that meeting. This is when you are presented with the Interrogatory. We get to ask you deep and revealing questions. And you have to agree to do so under the effects of "Frosty Breath of the Spoken Lie". I think we still do that. Check with Solomon
"I think we broke him," Guiverna whispers to Fleur in her native Occitan.
Guiverna leans forward to hear the answer. Having come through Sa Dragonera, she didn't join the "normal" way, and she's curious how that would work.
Marcellus nods as each step is described. Then he asks, "A few clarifications, if you please, Pontifex Maxima. Do I understand correctly that the tasks or labors are to be performed after the petition is submitted but before the vote? Or are they to be performed once one become a journeyman?"
"Is there a requirement for me to wait some time before I petition the Council to become a full member?"
"I stand ready to answer the Interrogatory at any time. I have nothing to hide."
OOC: If one of the other magi present has the information to answer Marcellus' questions before Carmen does, feel free to do so.
OOC: the information you seek can be found here. IC, the one who can give you this information in a way that best appeases Marcellus' curiosity would be Solomon.
The waiting period is at our discretion. Our rules say that we can't keep you waiting indefinitely, and in the meantime we have to treat you as a guest.
Right now you are a guest. My guest. You can submit a petition any time you want. Look around and see if the place feels right for you.
As for the labors, we don't always do that. I cannot remember when we last did. But that is a right the council retains as they consider your petition. We may want to test you.
Once you are entered as a Journeyman, you can stay a Journeyman as long as you want. If you want to ascend to the rank of Master, that is a different set of further requirements.
"Thank you, Pontifex Maxima Carmen, for your hospitality, and thank you, magi of Andorra, for your welcome." He inclines his head to each of the magi present.
"As I indicated to master Lucas during the tour he gave me, I am willing and available to create enchantements that your covenant may require, within the limits of my capabilities. So does the covenant have any need that should be addressed within the next few years?" He smiles self-deprecatingly, "As I am still inexperienced, knowing the needs of the covenant would allow me to concentrate some of my studies towards improving the relevant Arts."
"And before you tell me that I should study whatever subject I do intend to do that as well. But," he nods to Fleur, "as the lady Fleur has mentionned, this is no nursery for young magi hoping to endelessly study. Having more specific goals for enchantments will help me focus my studies."
"For your information, my current knowledge is mostly limited to the Art of Animal, while my crafting skills include both leather and iron. But I intend to broaden my Arts as quickly as I can, while also seeking additional training in my crafts."
"Finally, I have a few mundanes who have indicated that they would be willing to join me at my new covenant. With your permission, I will send a letter to my pater indicating that, at least for the next year, I intend to remain here at Andorra where they can join me. Is that agreeable to this Council?"
Guiverna smiles. "I do have one or two ideas. Let me flesh them out a little bit and get back to you."
Her smile broadens. "Sounds good to me. The more the merrier."
"Generally at least." fleur gives a sly smile, and notably has not yet removed her hand from Guiverna's waist. " what is your medium of craftsmanship?"
"As I mentioned, I can work in both leather and iron."
OOC: Yes, I can anticipate the reaction to this...
" well, that certainly sounds entertaining, but I was hoping to find somewhere I could learn to work with clay or wood. Still, I'd love to see your work."