IV - Storms in July

The Lore of a Loremaster

Topic/Postby Liandrix » 24 Apr 2014, 19:37

Catherine had refused point-blank to stay behind in Dalaran even though Liandrix was capable of transporting between the cities almost instantly.

Being a tailor she would have ample opportunity to thrive in a city such as Stormwind, or so she claimed. Fortunately her claims proved to be true. It hadn’t taken her more than a day to find a place to settle down, although unlike in Dalaran she chose to work as an apprentice rather than having her own small shop.

The shop she worked for was situated in the southern corner, on the opposite side of the main street leading into the city. That meant easy access for visitors, but a long walk for Liandrix. So by the time he stepped inside the shop even the plain cloak he had donned over his Kirin Tor garb was soaked. The shop itself was blissfully cool. It benefitted from the shadow of the natural barrier the mountains formed around the city gate.

Behind the counter stood the owner of the shop and the man that employed Catherine. Bill was a large man with a kind face and a round belly that would not look out of place behind a bar.

“Lo’ there Liandrix. Cat is in the back. Hot out is it?”

“One could bake buns in the shade,” Liandrix replied.

Liandrix knew the plain cloak wasn’t fooling the tailor and he was grateful for the way he treated Liandrix. It made him think of Bill as a Father-in-law. Liandrix found Catherine working on the collar of a luxurious gold-clad gown. It looked small enough to be made for a child but the garment was far too wide for that.

“Dwarfish fabric with magical components?” Liandrix commented. That joke would never grow old.

Catherine placed a few pins on the scruff and turned from her work. “Just ordinary cloth I’m afraid.”

“I think it’s a little too rich to be called ordinary. What is it made from?”

“Gold-infused silk. It took me a month to get the fabric to look this way. But I’m nearly done and I think Bill won’t mind it if I take the rest of the day off. Want to go for a walk?

“I don’t know. I might melt if I spend another minute in that weather.”

“It’s a lot cooler in the park. So how are things on your end of the city?”

Liandrix slid down in a richly clad chair some noble had ordered but never picked up.

“I’m starting to think that no one in Stormwind can read.”

Catherine turned back to the gown, smiling. “Perhaps you have to teach them.”

“I would if it were that simple, and if the house of nobles would let me. I need to know what kind of creatures they’re facing but they are giving me nothing to work with.”

“Maybe you’re talking to the wrong people,” Catherine offered as she held up the gown for her own inspection.

Liandrix frowned. “What other people are there to talk to about it?

Catherine put down the cloth and turned on her chair. “Look, the nobles might make the decisions but they are based on the reports they get.”

“And?”

“Well, if someone wants me to tailor something for them, they come here to get measured and pick the type of clothes and any accessories that they like with it. They could put it all in a letter, but that way I could never apply as much details to the order as when I could after talking to them in person.”

Liandrix sat back in his chair, frowning. “You’re suggesting I talk to the soldiers in person?”

“You don’t think that’s a good idea?” Catherine said, visibly losing her certainty.

Liandrix smiled. “I think I married a woman who is as smart as she is beautiful.”

Catherine hid her blush by letting her golden curls dangle in front of her face.

After Catherine had given the gown to Bill the two of them made their way to the park, close to the seaside. They stuck to the shadows as much as possible, but even so, the heat made it a slow process. They spend the time exchanging stories, including the one of how they met.

It happened just after Liandrix was accepted as a member of the Kirin tor and had to get his robes made, and Robert had wasted no time in introducing Liandrix to the perfect tailor for the job.

“Honestly Robert, why can’t I get my robes at Ben’s place; the Silver Scissors? Didn’t you get your robes there too?” Liandrix demanded as he was positively pushed towards a small parlour at the west end of Dalaran.

“Well … Ben always pricks me with his needles!” Robert said defensively.

“Really? He never pricked me … “

The shop Robert led Liandrix to was one he had never visited before, and when he saw how small and unnoticeable it was he was surprised it saw customers at all.

“Are you sure this is a tailor shop? It looks so small.”

“So do you. Come on, get in!” Robert ordered good-naturedly.

After opening the door Liandrix was met with a wall of cloth. The inside of the shop was so full with different kinds of fabric and wooden dolls wearing strange combinations of clothing that he had to keep sidestepping the whole time until he reached the counter.

A woman appeared in front of him so suddenly that Liandrix jumped a foot in the air. There were so many clothes hanging behind the counter that she had appeared to be a part of the wall. The curly haired woman followed Liandrix little jump with her blue eyes and looked equally surprised to see him.

Robert’s big hands appeared on Liandrix’ shoulders as if to keep him on the floor. “Calm down Liandrix, Catherine won’t bite. She might stick you with a needle, though,” he said with a wink in her direction.

The woman put a hand on her hip and appraised Robert with a stern look. “Oh be quiet Robert. I don’t stab anyone with needles. Did you bring me a customer?” Her eyes slowly fell on Liandrix like those of an owl. “How can I help you?”

“I … that’s … erm,” and a few choice sounds was all Liandrix could force from his mouth.

“You need to sew him a new tongue.”

“Robert …”

Feeling annoyed Liandrix cleared his throat and started over. “I just got …” No, I can’t tell I just became a Kirin Tor mage, that would sound arrogant.

“… I need some new robes.”

“Sure, what kind?”

Liandrix stared at her. “The … er … Kirin tor … kind.”

“Oh, have you been chosen by the Kirin Tor? Congratulations!” and she gave Liandrix a smile so radiant the whole shop seemed to light up with her features, leaving him struck dumb yet again.

Catherine turned and snatched a measuring ribbon hanging from a nail. “So, silk or mageweave?”

“What?”

“Your robes. Do you want them made from silk or mageweave?”

“Actually, I was thinking of having them made of wool.”

Catherine stared at him. “Wool?”

Liandrix felt his meagre confidence slipping. “You don’t make them from wool?”

“Well … yes, but I’ve never seen a Kirin Tor mage walk in robes of wool before. Most of them choose mageweave. Why wool?”

“Well … wool is a lot warmer, and winter is coming. Also wool is resistant to fire and magic which would be a lot safer considering a mage’s disposition towards the arcane. And wool is tougher than silk and doesn’t start to smell as fast.”

Catherine frowned. “How do you know all that?”

Liandrix shuffled his feet. “I read … a lot.”

“hah … well most mages choose mageweave. Mostly because it’s flashy and has more capacity for enchantments I suppose. I’m sure it was created for that purpose.”

“Actually, did you know that mageweave was created by accident due to a failed spell?”

Behind Liandrix Robert gave a meaningful cough. “I don’t think you should bore her with your stories Lian—“

“Really? How did that happen?” Catherine asked as she leaned over the counter.

“Well there was this mage, Archibald Grindel , who was working on a new sort of healing spell that healed wounds, not by providing an accelerated healing process as is usual but by imbuing the wound itself with arcane energy which has a natural binding characteristic. After casting the spell on a test subject and pulling the cloth aside he thought the spell hadn’t worked and abandoned the idea and healed the wound in the normal way. That failed too.

“Archibald looked back on his conjuring, afraid he had done more harm than good to the man. After some time, however, the subject reported to Archibald and pronounced himself fully healed. The healing spell had not healed the wound but had latched itself onto the silk that had covered it. With any ordinary enchant it would quickly fade without the use of a strong reagent. However, the binding latched itself to the core of the fabric in such a way that it altered its nature, thus creating a whole new type of fabric. The healing spell Archibald had used afterwards was then implanted into the fabric as an enchantment that even without a reagent lasted long enough for the wound to be healed.

“And so, mageweave was born.”

“That’s amazing,” Catherine said.

Robert looked from one to the other. “Yes it is.”

After Liandrix and Robert had left the shop Robert clapped his hand on Liandrix’ shoulder. “Well it looks like we found a woman in this city who can stand your babbling.”

Liandrix frowned. “It’s not babbling, I was just telling her an interesting story. Besides, she did seem interested.”

“Pfff. I bet she was just humouring you. I’m telling you Liandrix, leave your stories for something they could be useful for, like insomnia!”

“Robert I seriously don’t think—“

“Look, if you want to tell a woman stories make sure they are the right kind of stories, with the right kind of … seasoning.”

“Robert …”

“Now, my wife and I—“

“Oh Light, no ….”

*


Liandrix and Catherine didn’t get to spend much time in the park itself. They had hardly sat down before one of the mages approached them at a hurry. It was Kendall, the youngest aside from Flint, who worked alongside Gryan and was supposed to be focusing on the matter of the strange weather patterns.

Kendall muttered a swift excuse to Catherine but then turned with a tense expression. Liandrix instantly knew something was wrong due to the fact that Kendall usually maintained a calm appearance.

“Liandrix, the house of nobles sent a messenger to us minutes ago.”

“What!” Liandrix was on his feet before he realized it.

“They request your presence in the keep.”

“When?”

“Now.”

Liandrix was at once elated, frustrated and impressed by their swift response. He wondered what Milton Sheaf had said on his behalf. He departed at once and arrived, drenched in sweat, minutes later.

Stormwind’s keep was a vast castle of dark-grey stone blocks divided by countless of rooms and corrisors and ‘balustrades’. It was easily the most impressive building in Azeroth. It was also the most confusing. It took Liandrix close to half an hour to find out that the representatives were expecting him in a room called Inquisitas, and to actually get there. When he finally got there he met with four unfamiliar faces.

Liandrix felt let down. Milton Sheaf had given him the idea that there would be many nobles looking after the needs of the kingdom. The room itself looked a little too much like a courtroom with the four nobles, three men and one woman, perched higher than where Liandrix was standing: a circle of polished wood on the floor, surrounding a straight-backed wooden chair. The absence of manacles surprised Liandrix. He didn’t sit down.

“Well, now that you are finally here …” the woman said in a bored voice. “You are Loremaster Liandrix Emmot of the Kirin Tor, are you not?”

Liandrix did not feel like playing these games again. In a manner of answer he opened the clasp of his plain cloak and allowed it to drop to the floor with a wet thump, revealing the dominant Kirin tor colours.

“Wonderfull,” she said.

Liandrix surveyed the scene for a moment. On the far right (and the woman’s left) sat a stocky man with glasses taking notes as if he was recording a speedy conversation. Liandrix wasn’t sure if the man was a noble or just a secretary of sorts. The woman was tall with straight jet black hair that ran just passed her shoulders.

On her immediate right sat a man that could as well be a politician as a warlord. He wore dark short-cropped hair and a scowl to match. The neat clothes he wore didn’t quite seem to match his powerful profile, instead it added something sinister. Liandrix’ eyes lingered a moment too long on his face and their eyes met. Liandrix felt as if his gaze was pushed aside.

The man on the far left sat was a tall man that was so blonde it looked almost white. This made his age hard to determine. There was something else about the man, something that Liandrix couldn’t quite place, but he decided to discard the feeling. The man didn’t look very interested in the whole thing. In fact he looked quite bored. His gaze settled back on the woman, who was looking inquisitively down at him. Liandrix didn’t feel like making the first move.

“And with whom do I have the pleasure?” Liandrix asked.

It was meant to be a room-wide question but the woman was the only one who answered.

“I am lady Melissa Du’Paige. I seem to recall your requesting to speak with us.”

Liandrix clenched his teeth. Who is ‘us’?

“And I seem to recall Stormwind requesting a Loremaster be sent in order to make an assessment on the manner of creatures assailing the kingdom.”

“I can assure you that we have requested no such thing.” the warlord-like man said in a deep voice that made it sound like a warning. “I believe that privilege belonged to the Kirin Tor.”

Liandrix cursed inwardly. He wondered who had lied here, the nobles of Stormwind or the Supreme Council of the Kirin Tor. The image of Grand Magus Antonidas flashed before him. He couldn’t imagine the kind old mage lying to his face in full view of the Supreme Council, even though he was convinced they forced him out of Dalaran. The nobles on the other hand had no reason to lie at all. Liandrix mentally shook himself and tried not to think about the political games surrounding him. He decided to press the matter.

“The purpose for which I was sent was to enrich your library with a documentation of the creatures that you call Orcs,” Liandrix said carefully, and then waited.

Lady Melissa’s reaction was annoyed. “We don’t have a library!”

That was easy

“That is a shame,” he said and forged a puzzled frown. “What if I were to change that? I could collect written works around the city and add these to you existing literature in Stormwind’s own library.”

The man on the lady’s right answered this time. “As long as we must tolerate your presence here we would rather have you gather and document information about our adversary.”

Liandrix looked into his dark eyes. “Capital City has on a number of occasions overcome a threat simply through possession of sufficient knowledge. By knowing your enemy you can fight them on your own terms. Having a central and public source of knowledge such as a library will assure that. It may prevent a war.

“We are already at war, Loremaster. The Orcs are at our gates, King Adamant Wrynn as fallen. They are savage and cannot be reasoned with. As for your idea of a library; you are on your own. We can spare no resources on account of the war, isn’t that right?” he said, looking to his left.

It was the stocky man who answered, lifting his eyes from his own work. “I’m afraid not, no. All of our resources are spread thin at the moment. And due to relentless assaults beyond our gates, production has almost halted completely.”

“So you see, Master Emmot,” Lady Du’Paige said, “we cannot spare anything for such … mundane things. The war is our priority right now.”

“And how do you suppose to win this war?” Liandrix burst out. “By shooting arrows in the dark from atop your castle walls?”

He regretted the words as soon as they escaped his lips. He was supposed to get them on his side, not infuriate them. He really had a knack for aggravating the wrong people. In front of him Lady Du’paige and her dark haired neighbour rose stiffly. The man pointed to his own desk.

“This meeting is concluded.”

Liandrix didn’t wait to leave.

Once outside the room he berated himself for letting his smart mouth run away with him again. He wasn’t sixteen anymore. It wasn’t like he had a bad temper that he couldn’t control. It was more like he couldn’t help try to eradicate the occasional stupidity around him.

Liandrix moved through the castle without a direction, brooding on the meeting and how to proceed from here. He was, therefore, surprised to find himself surrounded by trees, and bushes the size of grown men. Liandrix stopped in front of a dais with vegetation planted on top of it and sat down. While searching for the Inquisitas room he had found himself walking in a large U shape. Most of the corridors must have been built around this inner Park.

He was about to try and find out how to plants and trees managed to thrive without natural light when he heard voices on the other end of a large group of bushes. Liandrix started to move away from the conversation until what was said registered in his mind.

“Yes we are alone, but it doesn’t matter; the king is going to find out anyway, sooner or later,” one voice was saying. Liandrix thought it sounded familiar.

“He won’t, so long as we stick to our plan,” a second voice replied soothingly. This one Liandrix could not place.

“It’s not the king I’m worried about. It’s that pesky brat Prince Anduin!”

“The boy? Surely you won’t allow him to disturb your dreams?”

“Mock me all you want, the child is an encumbering difficulty. He is arrogant, nosy and downright despicable.”

“Not to mention aggravating.”

“You stand there patronizing me and yet you don’t offer a single explanation yourself! I want—!”

“I know what you want, Gregor,” the unfamiliar voice forestalled. “Don’t worry; when the day arrives we’ll make sure the king and his prince are separated. We’ll device a reason such as the visit of an ambassador.”

“That shouldn’t be particularly difficult on that day.”

“It is decided then.”

The conversation was drawing to a close and there was a creak of a wooden bench as the apparently seated men came to their feet. On the other side of the bush Liandrix gathered all he had heard in his thoughts as he stood rooted to the ground, like all the trees around him.
Last edited by Liandrix on 06 Aug 2015, 23:19, edited 1 time in total.
"The motivation to study the Arcane should be born out of the understanding of the needs of those who would be affected by it.."

~ Loremaster Liandrix Emmot
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