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Scribed by Cormoran

Spring 1182 AD


This spring found our covenant in a confident and prosperous mood, our grain store and apple store were still packed after another bumper harvest last year. the buds were soon on the trees which worried me as an early frost would hurt them but even though a frost did come the trees seemed to shrug it off and hopefully another glorious year of apple and wheat production approaches. The council meeting convened at dawn as usual and the first action of acting Pontifex Astrius was to reward those who performed a season's services with 2 pawns of Vis per service. I took Herbam, as it was my intention to continue to fund the bountiful feast ritual. He also distributed fifty pennies to each magus regardless of services to enable each magus to have some personal wealth so they would not have to come cap in hand each time they want some mundane item. He stated that someone would have to undertake the boring duty of Vis extraction this year, as we were short of Vim Vis for the Aegis but no one stepped forward this season to perform that role. Carwen stated he would be inventing a spell. I studied from the Vim texts and Dialectica stated she would be going abroad to Val Nastium. As for the yearly activities Carwen studied the magic of the fae. Astrius and Dialectica agreed to attempt to breach each other's Parma to better understand Bonisagus' greatest gift to the order. As usual I carried on with my new passion, which was brewing from wheat and apples the perfect ale, as that is the only drinkable liquid that does not taste disgusting to my cursed palette. As nothing else of note was left to discuss we separated to our studies. A few days into the season, Hugh our spy in Huntley heard about some riders being observed by some charcoal burners acting suspiciously at night. These men were riding from the north of the village towards the road and before dawn returning back north. The area they seemed to be coming from was towards the village of Red Morley. Our stout Mercere colleague relayed this news to the Pontifex and he decided to investigate. They met the three men that night and slew them quite easily and quickly and then tried to capture the three horses that were panicked by the violence and fire of the slayings. Astrius used his ability to talk to animals and calmed one of the beasts. Another ran away and one lamed itself but Astrius cast unicorns healing touch and healed the horse. He then talked to the horses and asked them about where they had come from. They talked of a man who smelt funny whom they met. It was a tiring and annoying conversation for the horses were simple creatures and had no concept of human structures such as time. After a lengthy conversation it appeared they came here 2 winters ago. It occurred that the men were able to ride in the dark quite easily because the horses had been infernally augmented to be able to see at night. After a discussion with his familiar Astrius decided to bring them back to the covenant to see if they could be cured. He created a lean too stable near the covenant walls so as that the cursed beasts would not be inside the Aegis. Astrius tried to bind the horses lame leg mundanely but to no effect and apparently the normal course of action would be to destroy the animal but of course Astrius being the kind and caring man he is refused to do so, it makes me wonder whether it is more kind to put the beast out of its misery or to maintain it in the pain it was in.

Summer

Summer came with a warm spell that down in the orchards I could almost hear the apples ripening, the grain in the fields also was burgeoning well with little sign of blight. It is a happy time in Severn Temple with the abundance of greenery brings about an abundance of insects and up the birds are enjoying a bumper harvest of bugs as much as we are enjoying the growth and although traditionally summer is the lean period for grains because of out bumper harvest last year the grain store still holds plenty for ale whereas there have been harvests where we would be laying in famine stores at this time to still produce enough ale to keep all happy. The apples from last harvest are almost all gone but again our apple store is full of small but tasty ones with virtually no bad ones in the barrels to ruin the rest.

The council met and Giraldus told us of news he had discovered upon his travels. It appeared that he had talked to the spies about the covenant the we employ to keep us updated with mundane news and the bandit attacks had finished in the area where Astrius slew the men with the infernal horses. Giraldus also went to Tintern abbey and found that monks from Huntley had had an audience with the abbot and this was thought unusual although I'm sure we will not investigate this further as non seem to keen on investigating the Dominion, does this make us vulnerable to events from that quarter is my question. The tasks we choose to perform were as follows, Astrius created a spell to speed up his familiar, I learnt a ward against lightening and Carwen was learning a spell, the nature of which he chose not to divulge. With Dialectica and Medius away the season passed quickly to autumn and with it a beautiful summer in the forest of dean.

Autumn

The apples ripened by their friend the warm autumn sun begin to fall as the wind shakes the trees, the loaded branches leap skywards once released of there heavy golden burden. The late summer flowers feed the bees who must think summer will never end there honey making a wonderful mead, the sweetness of which is a nice change from the ale. If conditions stay like this here it might be worth growing some grapes for then I could make some wine for Medius which he misses from his home country.

Dialectica had returned for this meeting and little of import was reported to have happened during the previous peaceful season, but Giraldus reported that Xanthia of Tremere beat Tostig of House ex-Miscellanea in wizard's war authorised by Pontus. With nothing else to report we decided our studies and Carwen extracted vim Vis, Dialectica researched magic theory, and Astrius developed a spell. I learnt from personal Rego Vis which was a bit silly as the covenant had some and I could have used that. Later in this blissful season Alanus of house Mercere arrived with a letter for Carwen. The season passed peacefully and the harvest filled the grain store and apple store to overflowing with perfect fruits and grain.

Winter

The snow fell heavily this year in the dean after a warm start to winter the false promise of those early days fell to the soft flakes that smothered everything in there shroud. The trees cloaked in white looked beautiful and walking in the snow to check the orchards was so quiet it was like walking in the covenant with its inherent magical effect. The blanket of snow glistened under the apple trees in a way that reminded me of Gofinwii's cave it looked like the orchards were planted in a field of diamonds. For the trees it was a time of rest to recover from the the huge effort they had delivered the previous season, to rest to ready for the effort of spring which lay just round the corner. As I went down to the river to fish Iespied with my mediocre skills the tracks of fox, rabbit and deer, reminding me that every creature that does not sleep out the winter needs to hunt out food as I did. Sitting in the snows it reminded me of the witch queen of the fae and how I had almost lost my soul to her and her witchcraft. I am torn by my lusts and cravings away from the path of magic and the brotherhood of Hermes, but I fight them for I know that my future lies in the politics of my house by fist and thought I will help my house and my order. Fishing is good for me, it promotes peace and harmony in my soul and brings me closer to nature. I can hardly believe that it was me who destroyed the swath of forest to aid the miners, but I have found my peace now fishing and brewing in the dean and would live out my life happily defending my covenant, my house and my order.

What a quiet year this had been, and we assembled on a surprisingly warm dawn to discuss our actions for the forthcoming season as no one had news to report to the council. It was with pleasure that we saw that Medius returned to take charge of the meeting. After some small talk we discussed our seasonal actions and Astrius studied from Rego Vis, Carwen studied from Intèllego Vis, Dialectica scribed tongue of the folk which might be useful for my travels to come, Medius taught his apprentice and Giraldus studied from the mundane library. Medius told us that the tribunal had suggestions for the grand tribunal, that the order of Ethiopicus was an enemy of the order, that the Kabbalah were not an organisation and therefore could not be declared an enemy of the order and that a formal investigation should take place of Holy Isle. He also mentioned that a Hibernian quaesitor told him that the fells have set up a base in Dublin. He also informed us that in Transylvania some of the monastic orders have more information than they should of the order and that an investigation would be taking place there. Medius then went on to ask about Arctrus who has vanished investigating the London Christian cult but we new naught of his story. We cast the aegis successfully and went about our studies as is our want. During the season as I was fishing for supplies for my trip to come, I was told of the reed witch attacking fishermen by Blackney, I told Carwen and he investigated. Apparently some wandering priest blessed the reed bed and now the reed witch cannot live there. They found a new reed bed over our side of the river so it can avoid the priest. A worrying development was that he blessed the river but that must have been beyond his power to affect as Carwen could find no trace of his influence.
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