When they get back from the woods, Petre will look for Romanos. Upon finding him, he will wait until Romanos is not working on something or talking to someone, and then say "Anastasia tells me I should tell the magi that I can talk to animals. Who should I talk to?"
"I can let them know if you like, otherwise Orion is the current head of the covenant, or you can let Gabriel know as the representative of the covenfolk to the council."
"Where can I find Orion?"
(OOC: FWIW, in the summer, Orion is working on setting up the guest lab.)
Once Romanos tells Petre where Orion is likely to be, Petre will go there, and wait for Orion to notice him.
Once noticed he will pause a moment and then say in a rush "Anastasia told me to tell you that I can talk to animals."
Romanos points to the stone tower standing prominently over the rest of the covenant.
Orion looks down at the boy with clear interest. This was the feral lad that had been helping out with the shepherds. The magi hadn't paid much attention to him before. But that was likely to change.
"Very interesting," he replies. "Do you understand how incredibly rare a gift that is? Few indeed are the people who can understand the language of the animals."
((Elsewhere, Agapitus's nose twitches...))
"I thought it was normal. The animals don't treat it as odd. But Anastasia said it was rare. And asked if I could teach her to do it."
"It really is very rare," Orion replies. "You're very fortunate to have that ability."
When Petre mentions teaching it to Anastasia, he nods approvingly. "That would be a valuable skill for her to have. And with her Gift, she's capable of learning. It might make opening her Arts a bit more difficult, but that's not an insurmountable hurdle." He smiles at the boy. "If you're willing to spend the time to teach her, I'd be most appreciative."
"I work with the shepherds, so tell me when and I will teach her. Maybe she can help me come up with something to trade to the old man in the woods."
"I'll speak with her and find out when would be best," Orion replies. "My guess is that perhaps next Spring would work. She's busy with her studies until then. And I'll speak to the shepherds about what you're doing for her - make sure that they know you're doing a favor for one of the magi."
"But you talk about an old man in the woods. Who is he? And why would you want to give him a gift?" The older magus was unaware that there was anyone living in any nearby woods. They'd picked this place to be out-of-the-way.
Orion will speak to the lead shepherd and let him know that Petre is helping out the covenant. Is there any way that he could get that season considered to be one of Petre's seasons of work for the covenant, since he's teaching someone in the covenant?
Also, I'd like to speak to Maximilian about giving the boy a silver bonus for performing extra services above and beyond his normal duties.
"I am not sure he was 'here'. He and the fauns said that time was different there. He said if he came back here, he would die of old age. But they traded a book with Anastasia. They filled their book from her, and then seemed to give here what was in their book?"
"There were fauns?" Orion looks genuinely surprised. "More than one? And the two of you went to a regio - sorry - a faerie place where you met an old man? Please tell me what happened. Was it recently? Is this place close to the covenant?"
Petre tries to tell the story coherently. He stumbles several times, as his Greek really isn't up to some of the details.
He does make a point of saying that the Paidi had started by offering to free Petre. And that Paidi spoke to Petre in the tongue of the animals, although when they were together he spoke to Anastasia in Greek.
When Orion mentions this to Maximilian, tha Verditius nods. "The feral boy? We can certainly give him a bonus in silver, but will he even know what to do with it? It might be better to find something he will know how to use, perhaps a warm cloak or a good knife.
"That's a very good point," Orion replies. "Perhaps I ought to find out what the boy really needs. He certainly deserves some reward for helping out my apprentice as he's promised to."
So what would Petre want if he was asked?
My assumption is that Petre has already been introduced to the joys of a waterskin / wineskin. (People probably find it strange that he is perfectly happy to drink water from creeks, etc.)
So a good utility knife, and a good carrybag (knapsack predecessor, I presume he has seen those) are things he would like.
When and if he sees folks using or practicing with quarterstaffs, he will consider that very useful.
Petre gets the value of clothing, but not really. And he finds shoes just plain confusing. Of course, his feet are probably sturdier than the soles of many shoes.
Which caused me to wonder, do shepherds normally use slings? As I read the rules, sling uses "Thrown" skill, which is a martial skill, so peasants would not have it?
Technically you can use weapons without the abilities. You just won't hit very often, but if you are scaring away wolves instead of engaging in combat it will probably be enough...
Traditionally, shepherds have used slings to good effect. But I guess that is not true in this setting. It would not really interest Petre anyway yet.