9th of Zi'da, Arc 718
Secluded to the very corner of the tavern floor -- outfitted with a simple white button-up shirt, some beige linen slacks and a pair of wide-framed reading glasses -- was a man. He appeared particularly consumed by his thoughts, delving into the pages of an exceptionally grandiose book, pressed onto the surface of the faux-marble table. The book had an impressive leather-bound black backing, and a symbol equating to that of an archaic conception of time, with words written in the Ancient Tongue. Though unknown to others, it was the Compendium of Immortal Wisdom, given to him by Ralaith . . . and he was, through it, exploring memories. Words became images, selectively to his mind. Even animated ones, with fully lucid colors that bled into his thoughts. It was like he was there, again, in the past.
Each page turned was filled with volumes of memories and information. He could remember things so much more clearly since he'd acquired this thing -- trivial facts offered to him by friends an arc ago had become inherent pieces of knowledge, things he could recite off to others with such tremendous ease. Flipping through the pages brought a smile to the corners of his lips, as he delved further and further through. By the time he'd arrived at the forty sixth page, however, he noted that the Compendium was empty and much of the less meaningful things had been discarded. The man therefore began to log interest things about Quacia; about the Creep, its weaknesses, its nature. He wrote of King Arkenstone and his demeanor, and whether or not he believed he was personally fit to rule.
He wrote of magic and its contributions to society, and even its faults, despite his ideological presuppositions. And all of this was with his mind, and a tracing over the text of the book with his finger, allowing pictures and memories to flood in through his own door to time. Alistair looked delighted as the pages filled, the remaining establishment-goers refraining even to look at him, as some delusional madman pressed to the corner of the room. But the information really was there, flowing in from his thoughts. Ink bled onto the pages, and the pictures he painted were so vivid that they almost felt real.
One of the Chapters, or so he called it, was introduced in the Compendium with a large real image of King Arkenstone, surrounded by an embroidered gold border like much of the most noble inscriptions weaved into a book. Looking into the image, he could almost view memories directly, conversations held and anecdotes shared. He was reminded of his time as an adviser - a position that would last for however long, until the wind carried him elsewhere.
It was nice to be able to log his memories. To be a Chronologer for Ralaith had given him an immediately more fulfilling life, and for that... he was grateful.
With a sigh, his mind remarked on the purpose for coming here. He'd been looking for connections - taverns like this in the Gleam were for networking, and to be the odd man with the burly tome in the corner of the room was not appealing to potential business partners. Alistair quickly slipped it away into its own sliver of time to a vanishing effect, as if nothing had ever occurred, as he waved down one of the tavern barmaids to his particular seat.
"Venora Rose," he demanded. The woman nodded at once, inquiring about his fancies for a meal. The mage shrugged his shoulders, pressing the core of his palm into his chin. "Steak. With vegetables. Also -- twenty nel to you if you find me a drinking partner. It appears I've scared away all the other guests as a result of my big, magical book," Alistair nodded, with an almost discomforting grin. His mood now was rather melancholic, diving into memories of old. Many of the pages recorded tragic things, the brunt of his life of late. And Quacia was all business, and everyone was eminently a critic.
Still yet, he was here to make friends. And learn something new - perhaps to record that, as well, into his tome. As the woman took his offer in stride, he observed her movements, quite pleased to witness her approaching a tall man with his request. Alistair immediately began to snicker, wondering how she'd word it; it imparted a cringe onto the edges of his lips as he stared, and she sputtered her words awkwardly. Twenty gold nel was a hefty sum for a barmaid, so . . . it was worth the embarrassment.
"T-that man requested to be seated with you," she stated - not an entire truth, but not a lie either. "I believe he'd like to pay for your meal," she said, looking back to the mage with a vindicated smile. Alistair's brows rose in unison, shocked at her temerity. He quickly afterwards nodded in response, validating her offer. It was obvious that she'd chosen the only other foreigner to be seated with him, and that was fine. He didn't much like Quacians in general, and the underbelly of their society - migrants - had been much the source of his fulfillment of late.