A Walk Around The Property

Jp with Lorem and Cindy

Elizabeth walked to the door and outside, when Lorem followed her she said. "I think we mostly need to focus on the back of the property." She stopped and pointed towards the back gates, "Deliveries are brought in through those gates. So, they need to be accessible during the day, but the rest of the property boarder should be able to be set with alarms most of the time."

Lorem sketched quickly and took notes as they walked. She was mindful to pay extra attention to Lady Elizabeth’s instructions. She also took what looked like a clockwork tortoise with tank-like treads for legs out of her purse, attached the leash to her waist and was walking it along the perimeter as they went.

Elizabeth started walking in the direction opposite the gates, and towards the stone fence which surrounded the property. The fencing wasn't particularly tall, just enough to be semi private. About midway down the side of the property, where they were currently walking, some of the stones were on the ground in a pile and it looked as if a chunk had been talking out of the top part of the fence. "The other side of that broken out part was where the spy was found. I plan on redoing all of the fencing so it's taller and stronger with no holes, but if you can think of a better material than stone let me know. It does still need to be aesthetically pleasing as we do not need complaints from the neighbors."

Elizabeth looked for a moment at the tortoise; she had, of course, seen plenty of clockwork animals before but figured, given it belonged to Lorem, it must have added features. "May I ask, what does your clockwork tortoise do?"

Lorem would pause to write and sketch and then double time her little steps to keep up with Lady Elizabeth. Based on what she was being shown, she was leaning towards needing to address the fence and perhaps another system upon passing the fence.

“This is Moo. It is basically a clockwork series of stepreckoners. As it is pulled along it keeps count with eight place values. The treads give it the ability to go up and down uneven terrain. When I get back I will be able to take its binary information and transcribe it into base ten.” She smiled at her little buddy. “Basically, it is measuring the perimeter so I know what I am working with and will be useful when it comes to selecting materials.”

Elizabeth looked at the tortoise again, she didn't ask why it was named Moo. "Ingenious," the Eldren commented. "One day you will have to show me more of your gadgets."

They continued walking and came to a large tree near the fence line further back. "This tree, I have a feeling, could be a problem, as someone with the right skills could attach a rope from the other side to one of the branches near the fence, then hoist themselves up. With certain kinds of magic its even easier to do." Elizabeth didn’t sound like she was spectaculating. "I know this because I have done it before. It was several years ago, but the branches have only gotten longer and thicker making it easier to reach from the other side of the fence." Elizabeth looked at the tree. "I really hate to cut it down though. I have some fond memories associated with that tree."

The Eldren cleared her throat and straightened up a little. She hadn't expected that much sentiment to come out regarding the old oak tree.

When Elizabeth mentioned the tree could be a problem, Lorem instantly chimed in with a saying she grew up with from her parents without even thinking. “Problems are just opportunities to be solved.” She was sketching the tree with swift gestural strokes of her pencil.

Lorem assured Elizabeth, “I don’t think it will be necessary to cut this magnificent tree down. We’ll figure out a way to secure it and those fond memories you both share.”

The sentiment in the air had Lorem curious. “If you don’t mind me asking milady, what was it like growing up in the Order?”

"Thank you," Elizabeth spoke quietly for a moment.

The question about the Order, made the Eldren think for a moment, it's not a question she had ever been asked before.

"Well, until I was 16 I had no idea what my father did for a living. When I would ask he would say business, he was a business manager for the Crown, which is not really a lie. I suspected earlier that there was more to it, but that was always his response. I do understand now, why it had to be that way.

I was always surrounded by guards. I was tutored, did not attend school until I went to a private finishing school in Switzerland. My tutoring though was, I suppose unlike most. Mr. Sung was my trainer in Marshal arts and the magic he could tutor me in. My other tutor took care of the other magic, the basics, I was taught a lot about history of Europe and the Royal family. But he also gave me lessons in leadership. How to be in charge and keeping emotions in check without being uncaring. And etiquette classes, not just society or nobility etiquette but etiquette in business situations, or that was what I was told.

I was, I suppose, being taught to do the job I currently have long before I ever heard of the Order.

My father would go away on long business trips sometimes, I never liked that. I missed him a great deal.

Because of security issues, only the children of other members of the Order were allowed to come to my house. I didn't really know any children outside of the order, until I went to boarding school. You met Lady Elise, the Baron's assistant, at headquarters. She was one such child. Her mother has been the accountant for the Order for as long a I can recall. There weren't many of us. I did not think much of it at the time, it was just the way it was.

There were just a lot of secrets, things I could not know. People my father would have meetings with I couldn't meet. Questions that couldn't be answered.

When I got older, my father would give me leadership lessons himself. He tried to spend as much time with me as possible.

My mother taught me a lot about giving to others. Doing good work to benefit others.

Other than all of that though, I had parents that loved me. Despite being trained, from a young age, to do this job I am fully aware I could have turned it down, before officially joining the Order, or taken a different job inside the organization.

I am not really sure if that answered your question. Did you have any specific questions?"

Lorem was amazed at how forthcoming Lady Elizabeth was being. She never had an employer before that opened up so much. “It did and thank you for sharing.”

“If I might add, what kind of magic do you use? How did you learn it and train it? Do you think magic is something that anyone can figure out? I noticed you used it on my launcher … do you know if magic can integrate with technology seamlessly?” She obviously had a lot of question and had to shut the flow down before even more came out.

"My realms are body and spirit. One has be born with the ability to do magic. Someone with no magical ability cannot do magic. Mages can't do magic outside of their realms but all mages can do spells. Training depends on the realms. For the spirit realm, I had to learn how to separate out the spirits I wanted to hear from the others. I cannot control when or who speaks to me. I learned to ward against the spirits bombardment. I use this, for my wards." Elizabeth pointed to the cameo broach she always had on. "I trained in getting the spirits to hear me and what they are and are not capable of doing. Body realm I was mostly taught by Sung, but his magic is different because he's not European in his ancestry. So somethings had to be taught by my tutor. I had to learn to control my emotions and to focus my energy into things I was holding. When I went to boarding school, it was a school for mages. We took classes in magic. Some based on the realms we had, others were more general, like the history of magic. Some mages ,when they are younger grades, go to lower grades in regular schools and then attend magic training outside of school." Elizabeth paused for a moment. "Technology is tricky. Technology mages do indeed integrate with technology seamlessly. I can put my magic into weapons and things I can hold by concentrating without issues. However, I cannot start an engine using my power but a tech mage can."

Describing magic to someone who didn't have it, and Elizabeth was guessing, might have not have a lot of dealings with it, was not the easiest thing in the world to do.

She may have noticed Lorem was taking the time to right that information about magic in her journal. “Interesting …” she softly muttered out loud.

Lorem then confided in Lady Elizabeth one of her crazy ideas. “I think that science is the observation and explanation of the world around us. That which used to be uncertain gave credit to magic and mystery. Such as the rising and setting of the sun or the metamorphosis of a caterpillar into a butterfly. We learn though that there are understandable processes which govern such miracles. I think magic is just something we haven’t figured out how it works yet.” She stopped there. It was the type of idea that could get one laughed at.

“I wonder if magic is different in different regions, if that doesn’t mean that is also conforms to natural selection. Whereby fitness to one’s environment is the thing that is being selected. If it is part of nature, then science should be able to eventually figure it out?”

"Interesting theory. Others have tried to study it, but none have found very much. Actually, I have a few books in the library, in the house, that talk about those experiments." Elizabeth had to ask, "How much do you know about The Acuitus, the religion of most Eldren?"

Lorem confidently responded, “Absolutely nothing.” Eldren religions weren’t particularly meaningful academic pursuits in the gnome world. She was interested though in getting her hands on those library books to see if it could help prove her hypothesis.

"Well, we believe in a God and Goddess, Phaxdur and Metrix. The belief is that they found the secret to magic and bestowed it upon the Eldren. In time other races, were given magic but for a smaller segment of them." Elizabeth explained. "Many of our religious texts, as with magic spells are in Latin. Considering all Eldren are descended from Merlin who was British, I've often found it odd, but all European mages learn Latin for this reason. I am mentioning this for two reasons, if you donnot know Latin reading any magic book or book about the religion will be practically impossible. I have a feeling thar your research will lead you to both. The other thing is some Eldren, like me, are devoted to our religion but at the same time question some of it. Other Eldren are extremely devout and they will be extremely upset if someone, especially from another race, starts questioning their beliefs. If you are going to test and study magic, even from a scientific point of view the most knowledgeable places are the Magic Guild and the temple of the Acuitus. I do not have the power to get you into the guild but the temple is open to anyone. Just if you go, watch what you say to people." Elizabeth cautioned. "I will help you in anyway I feasibly can "

Lorem jotted down the notes. She couldn’t help but be confused by what she heard. Such belief systems were foreign to her. Could such fairytale sounding things be true? Perhaps when she tried to unlock magic, or at the very least mimic it, the answers may present themselves.

“I understand. I would like to visit the temple at some point.” She decided, though not sure when she would have a free moment for such a visit yet. Lorem was also fluent in Latin, so that shouldn’t be a problem.

“I am curious though, what do you question about your religion and magic?” Lorem was always eager to explore quality questions.

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