You are at:
Scribed by Aelfwin

Spring 1145 AD


These are dark days for the covenant and it falls to me to record them. In the short time that I have lived at Severn Temple Covenant I have built something of a life here. My wife, Helene and my first child Lora and I now have living quarters within the main building created so recently by Jolyon. It was my intention to move some of the basic equipment into my new laboratory, but in the end I studied from magical texts as - though I would never have wished it - superior equipment may soon be released for my use.

Where to begin with this sorry tale? This terrible secret which haunts our covenant spreads its rule of silence much as the cold air here smothers all sounds. I no longer know what I can or should say upon these matters; for fear that I break that silence and bring down further tragedy upon us all. Helene's strong and kindly presence reminds me of what we have to lose; and she carries my unborn second child. Lora stirs in her sleep, innocent to all the dangers around her. Until recently I was like that innocent, blissfully ignorant of all the secrets and historical crimes now unfolding to our investigation. Other than Lora, too young to know such fears, the only others who have peace are the dead - perhaps. It may be that even the dead know no such peace and are even more tormented than we. These are dark days.

Reading through this journal gives me some hope however. This covenant has seen trials and dangers in the past, and the continuation of this tome is proof that in the past a way has always been found to overcome adversity and survive for another year. Perhaps this is simply harder for me, being so young and inexperienced in the ways of the world; I see this crisis as some great shadow that cannot be defeated, where older and wiser eyes would perceive simply another challenge. This covenant has survived some terrible things, and even death has been overcome; but there is so much death in this place. Like some skeletal hand choking our life and will. Perhaps our home has been touched by the Morrigan once too many times, for it feels like death has made a home here also. Do I have the courage to stay and see this through? Do I have the right to subject my wife and children to this horror? I don't know. I also see that I have very little choice. So, I smile with strained cheer and tell Helene that there is nothing to fear; but, she is not so easily fooled and I am a very poor liar.

Audacia and Antonius are dead, and also the warrior Hassan who used to guard the tower here. Let me now put away my fears and light another candle to hold back the shadows for a short while; and relate the story of their deaths. At council we determined to further investigate the fallen covenant of Swallowcliffe and explore beyond the serpent gate deep beneath the ruined keep. With gemstones created by Ruaridh the party left the covenant; Madoc, Aledd and Arian travelling with Hassan across land, and some time later Ruaridh, Antonius and Audacia flying down.

They camped at night a little way from the ruins of the covenant, and during one of the many watches Arian spotted a creature moving upon one of the nearby trees. Though Arian is prone to giving false alarms, his attention was rightly caught in this instance for the creature was determined to be some imp or corrupt beast spying on them from the shadows. Audacia quickly disposed of this creature, and it was determined to search the surface level of the covenant for sign of any further spirits.

Several things were revealed by this search; first a spirit of a young man within the remains of the barracks. This spirit was interrogated and it revealed that many foul spirits emerged at night. Curiously this spirit knew very little of the inhabitants of Swallowcliffe, not even knowing the names of the wizards he served. Perhaps this place has always been one of secrets, I don't know, but the man was young and had not given long service before he died during the attack that destroyed the covenant.

Secondly, Aledd discovered some tracks which emerged from the forest's edge and led towards the ruins of the keep. The tracks were of two figures, one much heavier than the other as if weighed by armour. Whilst tracks could be found leading into the ruin, none were found leaving; suggesting that either the intruders were still within or had left by route other than foot. Lastly, some blood was discovered on one of the pieces of rubble within the remains of the keep structure. Ruaridh cast Sense of the Lingering Sigil upon the sites and discovered that an apportation spell had delivered the two figures to the edge of the forest, and near to the blood in the keep, a spell to destroy blood had been cast. Both these sigils had the character of slyness; the same sigil which had been discovered at the excavated barrow of the Saxon King near to our covenant.

As if this were not enough to disturb, Audacia sensed some corrupt presence within the keep; around where the blood had been destroyed. When Ruaridh cast a ward to protect against demons and their magic, this area was disturbed; like some shadow being moved aside. Casting the Intellego Vim spell from within the ward, Ruaridh discovered that the sigil had changed; to that of a black symmetrical flame. This sigil is known to belong to Isabella of Flambeau, who currently resides within Holy Isle covenant. It seems that Darius was not alone in his diabolism; though I'm certain this fact did not surprise my sodales.

It was determined that Ruaridh would look into the past using a ritual. Within this glimpse of the past he saw the two figures make their way into the keep: A woman, hooded but resembling Jerriana, discipulus Tytalus, resident of Blywyddan Covenant; and a man, with a warrior's features and wearing chain mail. These two entered the keep whereupon 'Jerriana' surprised the man and slit his throat. As he lay there bleeding his life's blood she conjured some demon to arise. This demon took physical form, emerging as if from the corpse of the man. She controlled this creature before it could attack her and sent it below the keep. Before leaving, she took pains to destroy the blood and used some diabolic curse to distort the sigil upon the magic. She was last seen in the vision taking to the air and vanishing into the night.

There was some question now about what should be done, but it was determined that they would stick to their original plan and explore below the keep and beyond the gateway. Antonius was dispatched, briefly, to try to send message to Serenia; but she was not at Blackthorn, instead attending Inquisitor Gratia at Holy Isle.

Once he had returned with this news the group made a move. Ruaridh, Antonius, Audacia, Madoc and Hassan would venture further. Aledd and Arian were instructed to make their way back to the covenant. There was some concern that our enemy now knew that we had visited this site, and perhaps knew even now of their immediate presence; Madoc's first concern was for his brother's safety, thus they were sent away.

As they entered the keep Audacia spied numerous shades emerging from the stairwell and into their vicinity. From within a ward quickly summoned by Ruaridh, she sought to destroy as many of these as she could. When she could spy no more they continued down the tight spiral stairwell - into the pitch-dark chambers below the ruin. As they moved they checked each chamber they came across, wary of this demon summoned by Isabella. It was as they approached the gateway, in one of the last rooms to be examined, that they heard movement and readied themselves for a fight.

The demon struck with great ferocity and Hassan was forced to defend the magi as Ruaridh erected a ward once more and Audacia struck with spell. By some chance, Audacia's spell went awry and she was rendered unconscious as Ruaridh and Hassan fought and defeated the demon. Fortunately, there was no great lasting harm to Audacia and she roused to consciousness some short while later. The group approached the gateway, and the serpent lock.

The red eyed serpent follows the rainbow; this is true. The stones required are ruby, amber, topaz, emerald, sapphire, tourmaline, and amethyst. An incorrect stone causes the lock to strike out with lightning, though fortunately Ruaridh's parma held for the assault. The ruby must be placed in the eye, then each stone as listed must follow clockwise.

When the last stone was in place the wall next to the lock parted, revealing a passageway. Antonius elected to stand guard at the entrance whilst the rest of them made their way within.

Beyond the gateway the passageway extends for some distance, though it was difficult for any of the magi to determine such distances underground. Eventually the smooth walls of the passage give way to natural rock, though the cavern is still fairly wide and there are no obstructions or narrow crevices. At the end of this natural cavern is a large chamber, which appears to be almost circular. In the centre of this chamber is a large, and one presumes very deep, underground lake. The ceiling is high enough so that even with 'eyes of the cat' one cannot easily see the extent of it. The lake itself is fetid and the water is viscous with a black hue. There are signs of large numbers of bats within the cavern, their droppings adding to the acidic smell of the lake. This chamber, at least, lies within an infernal regio. Audacia was able to create pathways to two regio levels beyond the mundane level.

Madoc, with his mysterious ability to perceive past magics and magical places, described the passageway as a beautiful hallway, illuminated by shining specs of crystal within the rock. The chamber itself used to be a glittering natural temple; an underground stream creating a waterfall into the lake. However, whatever this place might once have been is long since lost; given over to corruption and the infernal powers.

It was whilst they were in the deepest regio that they first noticed some movement within the water. Realising something was amiss, Hassan stepped forward to defend the magi as a huge serpent emerged from the dark waters before them. This serpent, with scales of jet and demonic eyes, attacked him as he raised his sword to strike. It's mouth was as wide as a man is tall, and it took Hassan with a single bite; swallowing him whole. Audacia tried to strike at the demon with magic, but such was this creature's might that the spell simply washed over it and caused it no harm. Ruaridh tried to create a path to a shallower level of the regio, but inexplicably the spell failed; time and time again.

Audacia, realising her magic was not effective against this monster, also tried to create such a path; but with the same lack of success. The three magi resorted to foot, fleeing down the passageway as the monster, having finished Hassan, came after them. Audacia, in the last place, was not quick enough. With her life she bought Madoc and Ruaridh a chance to flee. Ruaridh and Madoc escaped into the passageway through which they had come.

Trekking back along this passageway they eventually made their way to the entrance. To their horror they found that the door was shut. At this point Ruaridh attempted to apport, but to no avail. Even in the mundane level, whatever strange enchantments protected this place appeared to distort their magics - both Ruaridh and Madoc discovered themselves apporting back to the dark chamber at the end of the passageway, though fortunately in the mundane level there was no sign of the demonic serpent. Making their way back to the entrance Ruaridh summoned a ward against demons. The door, walls and ceiling of this place were magical, and resisted all attempts to either open the door or create a tunnel to the surface. So the two men waited; for death or rescue they did not know.

They were not alone, for after a short time a demon approached them; attempting to bargain. For one of their lives spared, they must give the other up; but my sodales are too wise and true of heart to fall for such dealings. It threatened that it could corrupt Audacia's spirit, and revealed things that it knew; claiming that she had told him. Ruaridh attempted many times to destroy the demon, but each time it sent only some illusion to speak with them, keeping itself well beyond the range of Ruaridh's destructive magics.

Antonius had held his post beyond the gate and was only forced away because of terrible injuries. First he had spied a wolf at the bottom of the stairwell watching him, though it never got within the range of any of his spells. He made himself invisible, but the light he had conjured (the only illumination in this dark place) continued to shine; revealing his approximate whereabouts. Before he knew it he was attacked with a great gout of fire that filled most of the corridor and penetrated his parma magica, burning him severely. He was lucky to cast his apportation spell before the next attack struck him; I strongly doubt that he would have survived had he not fled. He arrived back at the covenant and stayed only long enough for Helene and I to tend something of his wounds. While he explained a little of what happened as we applied balms and healing spells to his burnt body. Then, without any further delay, he made his way back with all haste to Swallowcliffe - well aware that our friends could now be trapped within. Whatever else has been said about Antonius, let this be remembered of him; that gravely wounded he returned to fight a magic-wielding diabolist who had already bested him, and that he did this for the sake of his sodales and with no thought for his own life.

Returning to the site he sought to evade the tracking wolf that watched the surface, and tried to find an angle from which to attack. He tried a spell on the wolf at one point, but the creature resisted (though the spell must have penetrated at something like the 9th or 10th magnitude). However, he got close enough to make a disturbing discovery. Antonius recognised the wolf. The wolf was a perfect likeness for Darius's familiar.

Still trying to find his quarry and figure out a plan to save his sodales, Antonius came under fire from this invisible enemy. Once again the fires pierced his magic protection, but this time he failed to apport before the flames struck. He was rendered unconscious by injury whilst invisible himself, and borne by the spell 'The travelling thistledown'.

I told Turold of what Antonius had imparted before returning to Swallowcliffe, and he wisely determined to seek out Serenia in the hope of obtaining additional help. The journey to Holy Isle was without event, but upon his arrival he was told that the senior Quaesitor had suffered some magical accident and could not be disturbed. Given what I suspect of the magi there, I would have fled at that point; but fortunately for Ruaridh, Madoc and Antonius, Turold is made of sterner stuff. He spent the night at Holy Isle, watched continuously by an armed escort. The next day he managed to contact Gratia, the Inquisitor, and she was able to take him to Serenia.

It seems that Serenia had indeed suffered incident. By some magic her eyes had been transformed to black orbs, and rendered her sightless as a result. However, her blindness did not prevent her from immediately seeing the danger at Swallowcliffe, and she authorised Turold to seek immediate aid from Jordael and Garius at Cad Gadu. Turold needed no second telling and left for Cad Gadu that instant.

I don't know how, but Jordael and Garius managed to find Swallowcliffe and locate Antonius's unconscious body up in one of the trees that overlook the ruin. From him they learned the stones required to open the portal, but it took over a day to locate the correct gems. Eventually they were able to release Ruaridh and Madoc.

A few days later, once people had been given a chance to recover a little from their ordeals, we met as council. There we discussed several issues. First, there was discussion of whether or not Audacia's spirit might be 'corrupted' and sent against us as this demon threatened. Whilst it was felt that this was unlikely, we decided to take no chance and recast the Aegis of the Hearth. Ruaridh also revealed that Audacia had imparted to him some weeks before a strange vision; in which Audacia witnessed Darius rise from the dead and slay her. We could not fathom the meaning of this vision, but Raegwulf is a visionary and it was decided that we would put this matter before him to see if he could shed any light.

There was now a question of whether Darius was truly dead, and the nature of his familiar. To be honest we speculated for some time on this issue, but to no great avail. Something of his corruption appears to survive, and it seems that Isabella is certainly a diabolist too. Given that Isabella and Ruaridh have fought wizard's war in the past, it was suggested that someone else should quickly witness the sigils at Swallowcliffe - lest Ruaridh's evidence is attacked as bias. Turold also raised the possibility that these diabolists now have Gofannon's crown, as we assume that it was Isabella who excavated the barrow, and he determined to seek out the Mountain King to better understand the ramifications of this.

Antonius reminded us that Audacia had a spirit companion, and whilst he thought that it most probably would have passed on now that Audacia is dead, he thought it wise to seek out this spirit and be sure. This companion to Audacia was once her apprentice, and had set fires around the covenant in the past. We also discussed Bethwyn's future. Ruaridh had talked with her and offered to continue her training, but she had declined saying she wanted to return to the Morrigan's realm. I was somewhat shocked that Ruaridh and Turold were so ready to hand this 10 year old girl to the goddess of war and death; and I must confess that I became quite heated in my argument. It was eventually agreed that Helene and I would look after the girl and see whether she could be encouraged to take another mater or pater. I hope that my words did not offend either Ruaridh or Turold in this, for whilst I felt strongly on the issue of Bethwyn's future; we need unity and friendship here in the covenant more than ever and I recognise they were only counselling what they thought was in the child's best interests.

Antonius and Ruaridh eventually tracked Ricado, Audacia's spirit companion, to Audacia's sanctum. They entered with little fear and conjured the spirit to appear. The spirit was hostile and warned them to leave or else it would attack them. Ruaridh and Antonius were unsure precisely what threat this spirit posed, and unwisely in retrospect, considered the matter in the sanctum as the spirit became increasingly angry. Then, whilst Ruaridh and Antonius were still undecided, the spirit struck out with fire. A blast of flame ripped through the small antechamber. Whilst Ruaridh's parma magica held against the flames, Antonius's did not. He was killed instantly.

That Antonius, having survived the terrible events at Swallowcliffe, should be struck down by Audacia's watching spirit is a grave and meaningless tragedy. When I heard I must confess that my heart sank with despair; for this death made no sense to me. If only they had left the room to make their considerations. If only they had waited a few weeks for Antonius to make a full recovery from his wounds. But this hindsight is cruel.

When Madoc heard of Antonius's death he left, for some reason, to travel to Blackthorn. There, for some unimaginable motive, he spoke with Eloria and inadvertently revealed both Audacia's death and that matters were being held under the rule of silence. I have to say also that I heard Aledd singing late into the night within the tavern, in celebration of Antonius's death. I know they both blame him for Reece's death, but this joy at the death of one of our sodales; one who had risked his life to try and save Madoc from the infernal pits of Swallowcliffe, frankly made me sick. I had no idea that Madoc and his brother were so heartless.

Perhaps triggered by Madoc's ill-advised confession to Eloria, we were visited by Serenia, Jordael, Garius and the new Primus of Tytalus, Lazarus. We had a long meeting in the new Great Hall where we discussed events and tried to determine what our next step should be. What disturbed me most was seeing old and wise magi like Serenia and Jordael at such a loss. In the end it was decided, for better or worse, to cover up the location and events surrounding Audacia's death and maintain the rule of silence on the matters of Swallowcliffe. Audacia apparently travelled into the faerie regio to get some vis, got into a fight with the Morrigan and died. We only know because her familiar Curwen died. Incidentally, Curwen was discovered to have died and we have burnt her remains and buried them beyond the aegis.

I don't know how much more of this tragedy I can write. My hands grow tired and the candlelight is dimming; those shadows threatening to sweep in again. I shall leave this story here, for now, perhaps next season I shall find more strength and hope to bear this quill again. I know not what gods or goddesses exist, but I shall pray to all of them to look after the spirits of Antonius, Audacia and Hassan. I shall also ask them to watch over my family and keep them from harm as our covenant enters such dangerous times.

Summer

I had better sit and make time to scribe the events affecting our covenant, lest I be accused of tardiness by my sodales. To be honest though, things are not easy at the moment. Helene is weary with her burden of child, and I'm spending less and less time sorting out my laboratory, and more and more time looking after Lora. However, both of my beloved are now asleep at last, and quietly I now have opportunity to write.

The meeting determined Ruaridh would extract vim from our aura as Covenant service. For my part I thought to transfer some of the more complex equipment to my laboratory. Even though I have the permission of Council, it's hard not to feel a bit of a thief going into another's sanctum and removing what once belonged to them. Also as service, Madoc would travel to Mynydd Myddyn and while there attempt to scribe up some spells.

Prior to Madoc's journey, we had sent the entire contingent of the guard to transport goods and supplies to the camp just beyond the regio. These supplies would see our grogs stationed inside through for another year, and also provide materials for the reconstruction of the fort (nails, tools, etc). It was while on route to meet the guard at the old way station that Madoc happened upon a deserted campsite, and Raegwulf made a disturbing observation.

It appears that this campsite had been attacked, and Raegwulf could still see the tormented spirit of one of the victims lingering nearby. Worse still, it seems that this was a camp the guard had evidently set on route to the way station. Even worse than this, it became apparent from the tracks that the camp had been attacked by werewolves - and worst of all - at least some of the guard had been carried away into the nearby forest. As they were investigating the ruined camp, a spy was spotted by the forest's edge. Thinking this possibly a scout for the werewolves, Madoc ordered the others to take up what goods and supplies they could, and make all pace for the regio. It was his hope that if they could make it into the regio, then they would be safe from attack.

However, as they were forced that night to camp just beyond the regio boundary (having narrowly missed the opportunity to enter), they were attacked by wolves! A fierce battle ensued in which the grog Dunn was slain. Madoc was able to transmute his sword into silver and gave it to his brother Alledd, and between them they slew a number of the wolves driving the rest into flight. Raegwuld has been hard pressed, but survived by virtue of an potion of invisibility that had been granted to him earlier. However, it has later been revealed that he was injured by one of the wolves; but more of his curse later.

The next day, Madoc attempted to find the entrance to the regio, but unfortunately his magic went dreadfully awry. The Intellego Vim spell that he enchanted caused the bodies of the dead werewolves to rise, animated by some spirits - perhaps infernal spirits. However, after a lot of running about and considerable panic and delay, the party managed to lose their pursuers and enter the regio.

It seems that a good relationship has been struck with the celts who reside in the nearby forest, and friendships between our men and they foster a strong alliance. As reconstruction of the fort continues, there is still the defensively strong tower to fall back upon. During Madoc's stay things there were peaceful - though he got little scribing completed because of the way time moves so strangely. While they were there, Raegwulf had a strange vision - a vision of such import, that Madoc immediately determined to strike the camp and return to the covenant.

The vision told of the wizard's war between Isabella and our ally Garius. Evidently, though I have not heard the details of it, some feature of the dream caused Turold to be concerned that Gofannon might interfere with the war - as Isabella was in possession of a crown belonging to that Faerie King. Turold sought Garius at Cad Gadu, but it seems that the magus had already left and the wizard's war already begun.

There was also some considerable concern for (and a little fear of) Raegwulf. Having been bitten by the werewolves, he appeared to have taken on their curse - and there was some question whether this curse was infernal in nature, or involved possession by infernal spirits. In the end, with Raegwulf's compliance (indeed insistance) we created a cage for him down in the cave he now dwells in. During the nights of the full moon, Raegwulf will ensure he is caged - and thus will present no danger to others. However, this isn't a long term solution really. We need to help him to find a way to lift this curse - or perhaps, develop some potion to help relieve his madness over the full moon.

The arrival of two new magi has lifted my spirits a little. The prospective members of the covenant are Astrius filius Garius follower of Flambeau, and Theo filius Jordael member of Ex-Miscellanea. Both are from Cad Gadu and so far appear most worthy additions to our council. Theo is a minstrel or bard of sorts, and tells the most magnificent stories. Astrius, despite the violent nature of his tradition, appears a solid and decent sort - and does not disturb me (or Helene) anything like the dreaded Audacia did (May her spirit find peace).

Autumn

If I thought last season was busy, then this season has been far busier! However, for all the distraction from any thought of study, it has been a wonderful season - for my first son has been born! We have named him Matthew, after Helene's father, and he is fit and well. I was supposed to be making glasswear for laboratories (especially the one up at Mynydd Myddyn), but I fear - despite it being a covenant service - much of my time was spent looking after Helene and Lora. However, I worked a few additional nights to make up for lost time, and I believe the glass work is completed.

Astrius and Theo have joined the covenant. It's good to have a full council again. There is a definate feeling of being a young covenant - enjoying a new spring - four of the six magi here are fairly young. For covenant service Astrius will extract vim, and Turold will set up a field laboratory so that in future he can more profitably research the Myddyn stone.

During this season I noticed Primus Lazarus of Tytalus was paying our covenant many visits. This was part of the deal struck for his exorcising Audacia's spirit companion. Though he primarily confined himself to the library - and for the most part neither I or the others were particularly aware of his comings and goings - he was apparently some questions to various members of the covenant. The whole 'sniffing around' made me feel a bit nervous - to be honest - though obviously he knows about Swallowcliffe already. I've told Bethwyn to keep away from him, just in case Lazarus sees she is gifted and is tempted to try and claim her as an apprentice.

Baron Martin of Monmouth decided to travel to the covenant to speak to Anthony about taxes. Ruaridh and Theo primarily dealt with this issue - at the time Helene was feeling unwell so I can tell you very little about it. The upshot was that Martin visited us (instead of sending a sheriff to assess our taxable worth) and that we got a reasonably fair deal on our taxes and back taxes. It appears that Antonius did Martin some considerable favour not so long ago, a favour that still stands us in good stead. I do wonder whether we ever even heard one tenth of our Tytalan's activites in the mundane world!

Turold had a visitor from Hibernia, one Shaugn of Merinita (formally a member of Verditius). I didn't really get a chance to speak to him much, but Shaugn did grace us with a fair display of musical talent one evening, Theo joined in, and it became something of an excellent night. Theo left us shortly afterwards on a brief visit to Cad Gadu to speak to his pater. He arrived back in good time for our next meeting of council.

Winter

With a new born and a two year old and Bethwyn all clamouring for attention this season has been most distracted. Helene insisted that I found some time to study - and indeed I've been trying to make use of the Corporem book this season. I'm sure I've barely seen more than my laboratory and the infirmary this season! This season Astrius will extract vim again, and Theo will undetake an exploration of Monmouth. As it's likely that Theo will be handling our affairs with the mundane world, then this is counted as service.

The Red Cap, Laretius, arrived with news: Peace has been brokered with the Welsh and the latter have withdrawn their troops (Though the Earl has insisted on a strong levy in case they change their minds). However, the King still has problems in Normandy - against the French - and in the North, against the Scots. It's still not clear, also, whether Stephen du Blois has completely given up all hope of the Crown.

It seems we are not the only land beset with trouble, and that tensions in the Levant are on the rise. Laretius now says many Christian lords speak openly of mounting another crusade. There has been some question as to whether the activities of magus Nycestas were in part responsible for stirring up trouble in Levant. Nycestas, recently returned from the region with finds relating to the precursors of Verditius's own magics, has been personally protected by his Primus, Boran. It seems that the politics of that region will remain complicated for some time.

Also we were told that Edith of Lear Valley and Magnus of Scarfell have fought certamen over a vis site originally discovered by my own pater Erin. Ruaridh has been asked to ajudicate upon the strength of the claims of each over the site - and report to the Tribunal if necessary.

***

Bethwyn has gone missing, we are searching the covenant to try and find her. I blame myself - so taken up with my work when I should have made more time to keep an eye on her. I notice that Lazerus is also not paying us any more visits, and I dread the prospect that he has taken her as an appentice.

***

I've just come back from Blackthorn, and there has been no sign of either the Primus or Bethwyn. Cursory investigations (for instance The Inexorable Search) has revealed nothing about her whereabouts. This means one of several possibilities - none of which are good: Bethwyn may be dead; she may be beyond the range of the spell over land, or across open sea; she may be within a regio either locally (she often said she wanted to return to the Morrigan's realm at some point) or further afield (if taken by Lazerus). We have no way to separate these possibilities, but everyone suspects that Lazerus has taken her. This likelihood makes it also very difficult to legally investigate.

***

The season, and my first year as scribe, have come to an end. It began with the death of Audacia and Antonius, proceeded with the death of our Guard, and Raegwulf being cursed, and has ended with Bethwyn's disappearence. Not all things have been so foul though. My son, Matthew, was born and thrives well here in the covenant. We also have two new sodales, Astrius and Theo. Not for the first time it feels as if we are teetering upon a knife's edge; between growth and destruction. Which way we shall go is anyone's guess ...
 You are at: