2020-07-06 - Of Journals and Treatise


Zee seeks assistance from Ambrose and Fenris

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Mon Jul 6 06:18:21 2020
Location: The Alhambre Theatre

Related Logs


Theme Song



Ambrose has a bell. It's a very pretty bell, or it would be, if it wasn't so dangerous. He's been asked to keep it somewhere safe while investigations occur.

Tonight, Fenris and Ambrose have been invited to supper at Zee's club after her show.

There's a table set near the bar and a lovely light meal has been served, Zee has just slid into her chair and joined her guests, placing a couple of old tomes on the table beside her.

"I hope you both got to see the show and I must thank you for agreeing to see me so late. It's one of the few times I have in the next couple of days, I really do appreciate it."

Zatanna arrives and the gentleman-thief comfortably ensconced in his chair as if he owned every square inch of air about himself glances over at her. He's dressed nicely enough this evening in a jewel-tone blue dress-shirt beneath a black blazer and matching slacks. His silvered temples seem to have filled in darker since last he was seen, but not by much; they might be a permanent fixture of dignity on the otherwise youthful-looking demi-immortal.

He lifts his glass of red wine to her in a small toast. "Timing is of no consequence, Miss Zatanna." After all, he doesn't sleep. "Thank you for the invitation." An idle glance over at Fenris proves he's finally comfortable(ish) with the Dread Wolf. There's respect but not overt concern in his look. "I confess, I am curious as to why." Back his eyes go to Zatanna once more.

Fenris had arrived at roughly the same time. The air of dread preceded him as it always does but humans - and people who are like humans - are remarkably adaptable. Fenris doesn't get any less scary but as time goes on and he fails to eat the people his air frightens, it becomes more and more a background element of his presence. Well. Until he DOES eat someone and then everyone remembers just why he is the Dread Wolf.

"I did. An impressive collection of deceptions and misdirections worthy of my father." That's a compliment. More or less. "And a rather comfortable club. But yes I think we are both curious as to why you asked to see us."

"I didn't ask you if you saw the show to fish for compliments, gentlemen." Zatanna laughs. "I'm confident to ask for them outright. I am glad, though, that you did get to see it and enjoyed yourselves. Even if it you did just liken me to Loki."

Fenris gets a wink to go with that tease and Zee pulls the two books over. "After the collar turned up, I went through my library to see what I could find and these books literally jumped out at me."

The cover of one book is labelled with 'A Treatise On Magic of The Exemplars' and the second is a much smaller book, more like a journal.

"Fenris, when you and I spoke last, you were going to see what you could find about Ikkon. I don't suppose you had more luck than me?" beat "Well, better luck than me. What else I found out wasn't good."

Ambrose eyes the two books and then glances over at Fenris in regards to this Ikkon individual. He sips at his wine and listens, cross-referencing what he can in his own long-lived memory if anything seems to stick out. Kent, after all, has a library all his own of a great number of esoteric books and what else is a sleepless demi-immortal to do to wile away long midnight hours?

"Ah yes. Ikonn. Of the Bell that Ambrose now has." Well doesn't have on him and presumably doesn't have in his house but still has and so this might be of interest to him.

"Ikonn is not a topic that many of the great esoteric writers seem to like talking about. That or someone has taken a great many pains to suppress his works." The Old Wolf drums his fingers on the table.

"But… I know a few things. Ikonn is one of eight extra-planar beings often described as gods and for all the dearth of information on them frequently invoked by learned sorcerers. He or it allegedly took part in a wager called the Wager of Octessence in which each would create an artifact and invest it with a portion of their power so that anyone who held it would become physically and supernaturally empowered. These eight exemplars would then divide humanity into eight and fight eachother to the death for domination of this world."

There's a short pause. "Rather like that one episode of Babylon Five, actually." Green. Purple. "So far as I can tell the stories of this are meant to be taken literally and may signify more than mere legend. Fortunately Ambrose's bell is not the artifact that Ikonn empowered though it is still a very potent artifact meant to empower the being and draw his (or it's) attention to this plane."

This might explain why whatever Ambrose was able to uncover it was mostly whispers and allusions although there was one FASCINATING Tibetan text that Kent had that linked Ikonn to something very very like the Bane.

Zee gives Ambrose an apologetic look and then hands the books over. "It's strange don't you think that my library 'provided' a book on the Exemplars and the Octessence … well, I've heard of their allies called the Exemplars."

The journal might be of more interest to Ambrose though and Fenris can see the cover now. The name on the cover is Charise Zatara-Bouvier … writing in a flourishy hand. "This is a list of items that one of my great-great-aunts was tracking at one time. I found it interesting to note that a 'bell on a strip of fabric' is noted on the fourth page." She's marked that - carefully of course.

The journal itself is about one hundred pages. Each one full with entries that describe an item and make notes about their location or otherwise.

"I note too, Fenris, that a Crown of the Sidhe is listed on page forty five."


A sound of disdain from the Jackal at the individuals discussed in Fenris's information shared. "Power and its influence. I am minded of Shanghai and my wish to deliver swift kicks to the bollocks has not changed over a century." His nose wrinkles yet. "The bell is still safe," Ambrose adds. "No one has discovered its location. Humanity's own beliefs aid in its protection."

A mysterious little sentiment, but there's not an inkling of conern in the man's mein. Rather, self-contentment at whatever place he deemed appropriate by the coy little smile.

"But yes, unfortunately…and to make a terrible pun," he forewarns with a shrug, " — the name does ring a bell now that you mention these artifacts in conjunction with the name of this being. What treatise we have is still vague as to details."

He still takes the journal with respectful hand and sets aside his glass of wine to peruse it. Fingers gently turn pages after the bookmarking on the fourth page and very slowly, thoughtfully, his eyebrows begin to lift. Ooh. A quick flick to page forty-five. "Indeed, such a crown is listed," the Jackal confirms, glancing over at Fenris.

"A crown and a horn. Two artifacts we have confirmed are in play." The Horn in the hands of someone who probably doesn't know what he has but this should still be dealt with at some point.

"No mention of a gem or an idol or a 'fearsome fist', praise be." Because that would truly be worrying. Fortunately it does not look as if the Zataras were tracking those. Or looking for those. If they were he might have to sadly question Zee's motives.

"Most of the rest of these might take some work to track down." Fenris leans back and thinks. "The big problem is that whereas in the 19th century people were a bit more blase about the ownership of such things, in the 21st, almost all of these sorts of things have found their way into collections. Some few into museums but mostly artifacts of questionable and esoteric provenance go into private collections. The private collections of very reclusive and slightly obnoxious, but very very wealthy, people. A good number are probably in this city but the owners likely won't hear anything of parting with them. Or even letting someone else see them."

"Yes, and a horn." Zee agrees with Fenris. "Unfortunately, Leuitenant, the treatise may be nothing but words on the page. My library … and yes, I know that I'm talking like it's a living thing … can have a sense of humour. Dad always used to say that the library would provide what you needed not what you wanted. Even if if you could never work out why you needed the information it gave."

"I was hoping you might read through this and see what you could find? Another set of eyes might provide a different perspective."

As to the journal, Zee looks at it. "The Crown, I believe, is the Crown of the Command. Something one of my ancestors hid about two centuries ago." Indeed, the entry for that item whilst giving a succinct but detailed description only lists its whereabouts as 'unknown'. "The horn, is I think, the Horn of Proteus. Not that Charise called it that but the description … could be it. And you'll see this was in the possession of a collector back at the turn of the century, here in New York. It's not there now, we have someone searching for that but I suspect there are several others that we might find. And should."

Zee gives Ambrose a look then. "You seem knowledgeable about these things and when I spoke with Fenris, he thought I should ask you for assistance."

Ambrose goes back to page twelve after confirming the Crown, still lightly drawing a index finger-tip down the listings on each page. He makes soft sounds of interest to himself; one particular item has his brows lifting again and a look very similar to avarice gleaming through his eyes. It goes away just as quickly as he turns to the next page.

"It does sound as if you require someone with an inobtrusive presence and experience in relocating items," he muses to the others with amusement in his voice even as his eyes remain on the page he's currently reading. His attention rises to Zatanna a second later. "I see no issue with assisting. To confirm, you are unconcerned if I temporarily keep this journal for myself, the better to read through it?" he asks of the magician. "Or you mean both of the books in question." A gesture towards the tome on Exemplars.

"I am certainly suggesting that if someone is to have artifacts of this nature it is better that we know, like, and trust that person rather than not. And I am unconcerned with the niceties of property customs so long as it is not my property." Fenris WOULD of course be unconcerned with those kinds of things. Because they change so quickly relative to his time scale among human cultures. Because they are about what he sees as relative trifles for the most part and because he is a wolf and the bar of a wolf owning something is 'I peed on it last'.

Fenris… probably doesn't use that particular method. But he gets the mindset. Humans just can't make up their minds.

"Both books, actually, and yes." Zatanna agrees with Ambrose. "As long as I get them back, without notes in the margin and like." Ambrose might find that there are already notes in the margins of the journal. One of Zee's ancestors probably.

When Fenris talks again, Zee rubs her forehead. "I was thinking locating and confirming the provenance at least. What to do with them afterwards, we can decide. Or … see how things transpire."

"Charise had some of those items located in New York at the time. Unfortunately, it was before the days of computers, so her notes are rather a muddle."

But it's something, right?

With a small pause, Zee slides an old photograph across the table. It's from sometime around the turn the century and it's a gathering of sorts, your typical 'social pages' type thing. "I found this in the cover of the journal. It took me a while before I realised what I was looking at."

It's not obvious at first, but there's a tall, predatory looking man to the side of the photo - glass held in his hand and talking with another. That man looks an awful lot like Fenris which might not be surprising. Behind him though, in a cabinet, is an ornate chalice.

"The books will be safe with me, Miss Zatanna." This, Ambrose promises very solemnly. He pulls the tome about the Emexplar over into his personal space at the table before leaning back in the chair to continue perusing the journal. Realizing after a few seconds that Kent would be about ready to swat his knuckles with a fork for ignoring the conversation at hand, the master-thief sighs and closes it, setting it down upon the other book.

The photograph is of interest to him and he squints at it. And squints. And then looks over at Fenris. And back at the photo with a more keen consideration. "Bloody hell," he murmurs. "I presume the chalice of interest to us as well, yes? And I am not adverse to researching these items we think hidden away here in New York. I am patient." Very patient.

"It is. Chalices are very, very Anglo-Celtic kinds of artifacts. The number of them that were not made by or for the fey-folk is very limited and if there is one floating around about here then it is almost certainly of interest." The Old Wolf can also be patient. But if things come to a boil, as they are threatening to, he may be forced to act. On the one hand he can do that now.

On the other hand it would almost certainly bring a lot of unwanted attention.

"Shall we meet again then in a few days to compare notes once more?"

"We should yes and I think you and I should talk about that photo, Fenris." It's possible he doesn't remember the occassion, but he might.

"If it's ok with you, Leuitenant, two nights from now after my show. I hope to have more news for you as well." But it is late and Ambrose has homework.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License