The Quiet


#1

How goes the mountaineering, Mountaineers?
Seems like it’s been as quiet around here as everywhere else.

Since the magic show I’ve tried to stay busy.

I found The Cagliostro’s apartment. It was gutted. Walls torn open. Furniture smashed. Don’t know who did it. I remember Lauren saying Cag had artifacts put in the walls… either she or someone else took off with them.

I tracked down Lauren’s parents in Missouri. She flew back to see them once in February. My call had them worried so I said I was doing a piece on the midwest losing their youth to the urban coastal cities and Lauren’s email about it must’ve gotten stuck in a junk folder.

Tried looking into Kemetic Solutions. Brick wall. Not sure why they were providing tech infrastructure for a magician, or why they’re so hard to track down, but I’ll keep digging.

Tried looking into all the backstory we got from Cag, the folks who “owned” him, the history of The Cagliostro. Interesting leads that led nowhere.

Also spent some time going back over your progress with the Book of Briars. The fragments, the loose ends. The Greens. I put out feelers with a couple sources, see if I could offer you anything. Nothing yet. Like I said, quiet. Weirdly quiet. Even the city is quiet. Snow does that.


#2

I’m glad your okay Marty, we all have been so concerned.


#3

Dang, Marty, you’ve been busy! Glad to know you’re doing ok. Thanks for looking into those leads, even if it doesn’t seem to be going well right now.

I did have a question for you, though - would you be willing to tell us more about your time with the '94 Mounties? Since you’ve been poking around here, I’m sure you’ve noticed that we don’t know a whole heck of a lot about them and what they were doing. Any interesting stories to tell?


#4

^^Please Marty, I’d love to hear about the generation before us!


#5

Well, you gotta remember, we were barely getting online in those days. I had contact with them, helped them, got help from them a time or two (they had Lachmann on their radar too), but there wasn’t a forum like this. No public one at least. And they never recruited like you folks did.

What I do know is that they were driven by the same things you are. The search for the lost collection. They thought it would lead them to the truth about the world.

Not sure how many Mountaineers there were in the end. I knew Ascender, Augernon, and Knatz, but I heard other names like Tinkerdown, Huma, and Saberlane. (I’m in my fifties now so apologies if those last ones aren’t 100% right.)

I know they got close to something, never completely said what, and then everything went quiet.

They’d covered the tracks to their public lives pretty well so I only ever heard what happened to them second-hand. They got too close to something dangerous or something came for them. By then I’d found more of the “Low World” that the '94 Mountaineers had been a part of. A loose web of underground organizations, fronts, and societies like the Mountaineers.

Turns out people had been wondering about and looking for the truth for decades. I only came into it completely after the Lachmann disappearance. Anyway, through the Low I heard that the Mountaineers had been scattered like leaves because of how close they got to something.

I never figured out what the “something” was. And never knew if they’d been scared off, forced out, or killed.

I heard the name Ascender again when he and the new Mounties went public with the MAGIQ Guide, their version of an insurance plan against being quietly wiped out again. And I only found out about Augernon being in a hospital when Ascender posted about it here.

Seems the truth had been plied from their brains, and Ascender was the only one who escaped mostly intact.


#6

Huh, that sounds in line with what we’ve heard - unfortunately we don’t know much else besides that Ascender thinks there’s a war coming and something about a machine…

Any chance are you still in contact with people from the Low? Have you noticed any kind of unusual activity lately? I’m not sure if the Devoted were a part of the Low, but they were taken over by another, sinister organization. Now I’m wondering if more of these underground groups may have been infiltrated.

Also, have you heard of any of the following names - Ishi, Colby, or Mendelssohn? They were apparently friends with Sullivan, helped him with a major spell in the 90s. Not sure if they were Mounties or not, though. I wonder if you know anything of Orvin Wallace, Sullivan’s lawyer? Doubt he was a Mountie, but I suspect he knows more than he’s let on.

Sorry to barrage you with all these questions. :sweat: We’ve never had a chance to really talk with someone who was actually there, you know? It’s kind of mind blowing.


#7

The Low? Is that the word for the last of magical communities? Interesting… I always wonder what happened to the Gossmere woman described in the poem, assuming she was real.


#8

@OracleSage The Low World, or the Low, is what I’ve heard people call all the fringe groups and societies that popped up around the lost books specifically and magic in general. Not everybody thinks the lost collection is the cause of everything. Lots of theories out there. But yeah, I guess you could say the Low is what’s left of magic here, in this world, this timeline.

@Revenir I’ve had a lot of dealings with individual people in the Low, including the '94s, but they’re real careful about who they share their toys with. I always thought the Low was more like the “Darknet.” A collective word for a thing that’s not much connected. But it seems like the Low has gotten more organized over the past few years. Nobody wants to talk now, like they’re governed by new rules. And the problem with me being who I am, nobody in the Low wants to talk to a reporter.

There was a Mendelssohn in the Lower East Side. Heard she was “adapt” but never tracked her down, she was good at avoiding me. She worked out of her tailor shop and I heard she was advertising two of her talents with one word on her sign- “Alterations.”


#9

Is it possible we reconnect with The Low? I suppose we could pool our knowledge and work together! The only matter is finding them… I’ll be in the city on April 2 possibly, if it happens I’ll keep an eye out for this shop or any other signs of magiq.


#10

@WarriorRose I think you might find a lot of interesting stuff on this topic


#11

New Rules? Who would even have the power, or influence to silence a network of interconnected groups? Could it be related to the dissapearance of the group that was controlling the late Cagliostro?


#12

Yeah, I’m kind of wondering if it’s all connected. We know Sacha was picked up by a very powerful, malignant group with magical knowledge. Cag’s cult seems to fit the bill for that.

I’d be surprised if the Cags cult only had their hands in fancy pants magic shows. There’s got to be more that we don’t know about - and maybe that includes intimidating smaller organizations.


#13

Do you think the present Cagliostro could shed some light on this?

Do we have a way of contacting her?

Would she even want to speak with us?

Her words when giving us the final fragment were rather curt and they had a final curtain feel to them, she may have moved on to other tasks.

If we are below her, which we are in power levels, she may neglect to give us her attention if we ask for it.

I also think that the group controlling the late Cag couldn’t be the masterminds. The Cag is clearly a powerful but lower tier, not lowest probably like middle low, in the magiqal ecosystem.

I feel a large organization able to silence all these small groups would have their eyes on the bigger fish.


#14

I mean, we could attempt to send her an email, but I suspect it would go unanswered. Still, that’s a possibility. It would give her a chance to reach out to us again, if she wants to do that.

As far as the Cags cult, I’m wondering how you’ve come to the conclusion that they’re a weak group? They did control an immortal, magically adept individual and some kind of machine that has the power to rend all flesh. That strikes me as pretty powerful.

I don’t know, it’s all up in the air at this point. :sweat: Maybe there isn’t an organization responsible for silencing these groups and they’re just becoming more collected, thus the new rules. Or maybe something’s causing them to be afraid, like the thing that got the '94 Mounties. I don’t know, but I suspect we’ll find out eventually.


#15

@Marty.60 - Marty, I am curious about something - is there any way we could help get answers from the Low? I mean, as far as I’m aware, none of us are journalists. Maybe we could reach out to some of these people?


#16

I don’t believe they’re nessecarily weak, just weaker. I don’t think a big ambitious group would be using the late Cag to put on magic shows. We have no real clue the true extent of the Cags power but if I was in control of the Cag I wouldn’t be putting on magic shows.


#17

@VictorianFlorist My impression of the organization (s?) behind all the dark deeds that have been done is that they are some sort of group similar to what people think of as the Illuminati. And that they likely are descended of some much older “secret society” that practiced dark magicks. They obviously want control over magic in this world, to keep that power to themselves, which is why they hid the lost books in the first place. They have the power to make people, en masse, forget things that actually happened and existed.

Using someone like Cags would have been just a tiny part of what they do. They seem to be systematically finding people with affinity for magic and either controlling them or, if they can’t, destroying them. Lauren managed to escape, as did Brandon. Hopefully Dierdre won’t fall under their control as well (which is why Sullivan did everything he did, to protect her.)

I don’t think they’re weakening, by any stretch of the imagination. If anything, they’re at the height of their power. They’ve all but succeeded in convincing the world that magic doesn’t exist by destroying almost all trace and memory of it. They’re likely pretty much ready now to enact whatever their ultimate game plan is.

Bottom line, I don’t think it would be wise to ever underestimate these people.They’ve worked an awfully long time to amass the power they have, and they will not give it up without a fight.


#18

Fair.

Should we be concerned? If whoever is silencing magiq finds us, would they try to eliminate us? We would be in direct defiance of their aims.


#19

@Revenir, I’ve reached out to the few connections I had but heard nothing. But I’ll keep digging.

As for what @Leigha posted, I wonder if that has something to do with the recent quiet. If there is one or a group of shadow societies behind all of this then The Cagliostro was a piece in their game, and with that piece toppled they might be looking for their new opponent.

We might be wading into deep water, Mountaineers.


#20

From what we’ve seen thus far, yes, concern is warranted. We represent a threat, how much of a threat we actually pose to them, I don’t know, we don’t know enough about them. They’ve shown us, time and time again, that they have the ability to do something about it when they feel threatened.
And they’ve already found us. They know about us and what we’re doing, they’ve always known about the Mountaineers. Again how much they know is hard to say, but they seem to know quite a bit.