Alchemists and Secret Handshakes (The Albatross, Pt. 3)

06 Jan

alchemist, wizard

Liddy’s return to University in New Albion was not quite as triumphant as she would have wished. Her leaving had raised some eyebrows and her mental state prior to leaving had injured her reputation gravely. Spending a few years messing around with Faery magic and dissecting faeries did nothing to improve her state of mind. In fact she was even more eccentric and no longer in a cute, dorky way. She honestly creeped everybody around her out.

Her insistence that she was sitting on a gold mine of faerie data did not help her cause, in fact it insured a rather insulated degree of isolation.  Still, her mind continued brilliant even if bordering on unravelling, so they let her back in but tucked her away a bit. She was given a rather ramshackle apartment in one of the College’s more ramshackle housing properties and the left alone to persue her studies without much hope they would yield practical results.

Her new roommate was an alchemist named Anton whose outspoken manner and fringe experiments ruffled more than a few feathers. He quickly came to adore Liddy and her oddness, first as a bit of a lark, but he soon recognized that behind the mad exterior was an epic mind capable of greatness. While everyone else scoffed at her supposed mountian of faerie data, he was thrilled with it, although he still had a hard time taking it seriously. She dumped on him all the papers and notebooks she had filled during her few years in the forest and over time her interest in it drifted away almost entirely. Within a few years she met her future husband, Jonas McAlistair, and went off with him to pursue other interests, leaving Anton with the papers.

Anton became more and more surprised the more he deciphered Liddy’s scrawls. He quickly realized the notes were genuine and honestly pointed to revelations of types of energy and alternative scientific paradigms. He became obsessed with the research.

Anton was also deeply involved with the mystical secret society circuit popular in New Albion in those days and he started creating all sorts of ceremonies and degrees incorporating the Faery lore for the various Lodges he frequented. These degrees became wildly popular and it was then that he and his two close school chums stumbled upon their business plan.

The three of them, all students of alternative science, had long dreamed of opening a company who would research and patent new discoveries and novelties. The money to start up such a venture was far out of their league and investors willing to give such money to three dorky University students were few and far between. As an example of why the the trio was unable to inspire financial confidence: Anton loved to walk around in long wizard looking robes and make every conversation into a metaphor for some mystical alchemical knowledge of enlightenment which of course he hinted only he and a few chosen acolytes truly knew and understood, but which as you might guess was actually complete bullshit.

But in Liddy’s faerie research was some actual ground breaking, heretofore unknown knowledge. And while Anton’s theatrics were disastrous in the realm of business opportunities, it was gold in the secret society circuit. The three young men realized they could form a brand new Lodge based solely on the Faerie lore, invent a series of initiations and degrees and make a fortune charging for membership. Furthermore, they could test their experiments into scientifically channeling the Fae energy using the Lodge members. If actual magic could be made to happen they would have something over almost every other Lodge that purported to possess magickal secrets but which engaged mostly in wishful thinking using complicated mystical symbolism. The money they made could fund their legitimate business idea: Beltane Industries.

The plan was a complete success. For some years their Lodge was a smash hit and they did indeed establish Beltane Industries using the windfall it provided. However, Anton’s obsession with the Fae energy did to him what Fae magic usually does: it made him barking mad. Furthermore, the higher the Lodge Initiates progressed in their knowledge and degree of fooling with Fae energy, the more they would lose some cards in their metaphorical mental deck.

It may not come as a complete surprise to find that more nuts the leaders and major players of an organization is, the less likely the organization is to operate sensibly much less stay organized. The Lodge crashed and burned spectacularly and some of the best and brightest of New Albion’s mystics in that generation were loons to some degree or another from there on out, giving a rather bad reputation to the whole mystical secret society business and causing a sharp decline in the industry.

Anton’s two partners however never were overly active in the Lodge and only cared about it for the start up money. They ended up with a thriving research and patent business. Out of respect, Anton was kept on for the remainder of his long, nut raving life. He was given his lab in the basement, on whose walls and floors he could paint all sorts of sigils and magical diagrams, as well as play endlessly with his well stocked alchemical lab equipment. He refused to dress in anything other than Wizardy robes his entire life, although as a loony old man was actually well beloved by his entire neighborhood and treated with honest compassion and fondness by all around him.

Beltane Industries tried working with and scientifically examining the Faerie energy for generations, but only as a side wing of the company. Turning it into practical use proved very, very difficult. It was therefore quite shocking when, a few generations later, a few young post graduate researchers actually found some intriguing results when they managed to use it to make a few talking animals.

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Posted by on January 6, 2013 in Uncategorized


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One response to “Alchemists and Secret Handshakes (The Albatross, Pt. 3)

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