Avast Library

Acgozluk has returned for Adventure April! Stop the Demon

Library and training facility maintained by the wizard Nathan Avast in Etonia.


Scribes, scribes. Attention. Let's begin today's lesson. We completed our section on Ethics last week. Today we will be discussing conducting research and service projects."


Walking across the room, the Master Sage approached a map hanging on the wall. "Many schools in the South set up a competition between their scholars to get the best results. Holtswain assigns funding to sages that are creating the most influence. Coral Gate pits the different schools of magic against each other and encourages political conflict between schools."


"As only the fifth class of scribes to complete studies from our Library, we do not have time for extra drama. There are barely enough of us to complete the tasks of running the Library. We also believe that we can magnify our results by collaborating with each other instead of competing."


"Along those lines, you will each need to select a senior project. We will meet weekly to discuss progress and provide brainstorming and constructive feedback. You will each be expected to assist on at least one project other than your own. Project topics should be designed around the pledge of Serving the Forest and People. Each of you receives funding after graduation, and you can maximize your budget by collaborating. New collaborations also receive a bonus. Your senior project may be the start of a wonderful life long effort or just the beginning of many great projects."



The Master Sage retrieved a pile of Scrolls on the end of the table. Each scroll was handed to a student. "This is the schedule of competitions for your final year. While we work together on senior projects, we will also compete in these events." A murmur of complaints rumbled around the table. "No, this is not a contradiction. We will find ourselves engaging with graduates of the other schools in real life. But, while we will collaborate, we need to recognize the rest of the world may not and we will be prepared." The Master Sage's pressed their right index finger pressed firmly onto the table for emphasis.


"It is important to remember that competition is a process, not a goal. We are not in the business of gathering power but maximizing our own. Instead of taking, we build and create. Remember your conflict resolution training. Do not let the emotion of escalating conflict get in the way of resolutions, plan out your best alternative to no agreement. What do you do when you don't win? Know it ahead of time. Even the dance of conflict requires partners; it is a form of collaboration. That also makes it an opportunity to uncover win-win solutions and gain allies like the recent incident at the Ruins near the Red Lion Inn." The Master Sage could not pass up a chance to lecture.



That brings me to the next part of your schedule. Once a week, you will be training with the City Guard to learn how you will fulfill the requirements of the Etonia Wizard Network." A three-dimensional map of the city rose from the table as the master sage continued speaking about the roles the students would be learning about.


"Those of you seeking to be educators for the Library to the general public will begin assisting in the classes for youth between the ages of 5 and 12. You will receive your schedule from the Sage you will be assisting. Ok, you have an hour to begin brainstorming senior project ideas. You may work in groups. I will be around to assist each of you."



Ten years ago, when Headmaster Avast came to Etonia searching for a spell component, the Library was gifted to him as part of the deal. A druid gave him the keys to the building and said, "Remember to protect the forest, or even the stone of the building's walls will turn against you." The ominous warning did not make Avast pause but has driven much of the Council's decisions when they saw the power of the building.


The stone generates extra-dimensional spaces, allowing the humble library building to have a vast network of halls and study rooms. Ruins in the forest held more of the stone, and it was used to construct other buildings in the region. Avast's goals for the Library were to make life easier in the Wildlands of the North and learn more about the ancient civilizations that left this relic.


In the South, Avast's life revolved around working against the machinations of the powerful Schools and Wizard Unions. The corruption and failures of many kingdoms often started with those seeking unfettered power. His opposition to those in power aligned him with the rest of the Council, a group of leaders seeking reform. After the battle at the Wall of Thessali, the entire Council agreed to relocate to Etonia.


By training people from the city and surrounding region and then encouraging them to add their talent to the Library, he hoped to prevent migration to the South of the brightest people of the Wildlands. He also hoped to be prepared when the rest of the world realized the secrets of the Wildlands held enormous power.


Signal's Description of the Library

Excerpt from Finding the Source

Two months after our arrival I met Avast. The wizard entered the store in a rush. He needed supplies for a spell. "It is urgent!" He yelled as he entered. He pushed past a few customers and demanded a half-pound of incense and 12 wooden dowels. I pulled out the drawer with dowels and started counting them out. I'll count those he told me. Find the incense. I got it for him, and he rushed out of the store.   When I closed up for the day, I wrote up an invoice and took it to him at the Library. The Library wasn't much to look at. A plain stone building with a small courtyard near the large church being built. The church was a marvel. The Council figured it would be two years until it was complete.    Then I opened the library door and saw a hallway that extended many times the size of the building with rooms and stairs jutting off at all angles. I remember thinking, "What is this?!" A scribe welcomed me and asked me to sign in. I explained I was there to deliver an invoice to Avast.   The young man took me down the maze of hallways to a room with a lovely fireplace and floor-to-ceiling bookshelves. A comfy chair sat by the fireplace, and a large work table filled the middle of the room. Avast was busy writing on scrolls.    I told him I had an invoice for his purchases. "Place it on the table." I did as he said. He looked up at me. "Do you know Tactronese?" I nodded. "Please translate this."    That was how I became a Scribe and eventually a Sage at the Avast Library.  

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Cover image: Forest During the Daytime by Tim Mossholder


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Starfarer Theta
28 Dec, 2022 18:15

A library is always a great find. Though I must say, it seems to me that the building must be larger on the inside than the outside considering the number of people I've seen entering and leaving. I am going to have to consider how to enter such a place or if I even need special permission in the first place. I've learned to be careful about this sort of thing since the people hanging around libraries can be more inquisitive than most, so the risk of someone learning about my no-so-local origin could happen.   The knowledge I can gain from this place concerning the workings of this world would weigh quite well against the risks of discovery. However, it is not a guarantee that a library can have all the answers I seek. Not everyone has the same questions as I or in need of the same knowledge. This upcoming week ought to be an interesting one if all goes well and especially so if all does not go well. - Nemo, World Traveler

17 Jan, 2023 16:24

I love how this is written like the reader is part of the story and then you get the excerpt at the end. A very interesting way to write a building article but it is a wonderful read!

Co-creator of the fantasy worlds Isekai & Seireitei
Co-creator of the TTRPG System Storybook
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