Shaiman takes the book from you, but doesn't open it yet. He motions for you to sit.
"My friend, I am glad to hear your words. It has... not gone well. Vinalin, the leader of the Seadreamer delegation, gained enough support to force a vote. It was a split vote, however. It would seem that we have declared "No Search" shall be done this ten year, which does not bode well for us. However, he did not have enough vote to declare for war, so there is good news. He will not yet permit a call to "adjourn" which means that he works still to have his war!"
Shaiman shakes his head.
"Vinalin would see us draw swords with the humans today, if it were up to him. So, we languish. He works behind the scenes to sway for votes, and I am unable to call for an adjournment, so we appear deadlocked. Such foolishness!" he says bitterly.
Shaiman looks at the book. "Still... let us see what you have here. Written by an elf, interesting..."
He flips open the cover and looks at the front page with some surprise. "Look, GRAIAN... this was written in the 2,400s! That is well before the calamity! And... " his voice rises. "... it was written by someone from Ramathia!"
Indeed, the front page lists the author as an "Arondil of Ramathia, Mage of the Third Order, member of the Southway Crew."
Shaiman flips through the book, not so much reading the dense writing as to just view it. He then sits back for a few minutes, thinking. He then takes a deep breath.
"My friend, you have given me some hope that you are on the right track. When we started the Conclave, it was to seek out Ramathia and look for records that might point to where our Home is. We know that elves lived there long before the humans came and we gave the island to them. Some say it might even be the site of the First Landfall. If that were true, it might help us to find out where we came from!"
Shaiman stands. "We had heard of this Athenum, but foolishly, rather than seek out human help, Vinalin sent out the first part of Seekers... and they were lost. Now that you've found this place... you could take some Seekers with you... and we might be able to help you overcome any .. circumstances. Wait here a moment."
Shaiman takes the book and walks over to the other side of the room. "Tanalus! Call Vinalin at once and reconvene the Conclave. I bring news of some import!"
Events happen quickly. Within one bell's watch, the elves return to their seats, curiosity on their faces. A tall, almost white-haired, slender elf walks in last, followed by the dour door elf, who shuts the door.
"So, we are all here, Shaiman. What is this... 'news' you are crowing about?" the tall white-haired elf sneers.
"Tah avaf, Vinalin" Shaiman responds. "Be at peace, at least for the moment. My fellow crew members, we have sat here without answers for far too long, a rudderless ship caught in the doldrums and becalmed without winds. I bring news that winds are coming, that we have a direction and possibly the answers that we sought when we first convened."
"This elf (Shaiman points to you), Graian of the Meliamne clan, has done what others did not. With the help of his companions, he has found the rumored library. Even more, he has brought proof that whoever stocked this library had books written by elves... and from Ramathia!"
Shaiman dramatically tosses the book onto the table in front of Vinalin, it lands with a loud THUMP! At this, the other elves begin to talk excitedly, their voices drowning out each other until it is a cacophony. Several of the Foamfollow faction come over and pat you on the back, each talking to you at the same time. Vinalin picks up the book and thumbs through it and then picks up the stone clapper and bangs it many times to silence the meeting.
"A magic book... " he says in a mocking voice. "You would have us believe that all our answers are from a dull text on elven magic?"
"No Vinalin, that book is not the answer. But Graian and his companion say that the library is large and they have only been in one part of it. We know that the library was difficult to find, that it was founded by a powerful human mage and now we see that this mage had books from Ramathia and by elves. You sent out Seekers back in the early days of the Conclave, without any sure footing or steady winds. Now, I say to you, this one (Shaiman points to GRAIAN) can guide our Seekers there and find the proof we seek... that there is elven history to be found in Ramathia!"
(Michael S (chgowiz) rolled 4, 3 on 2d6 +2 for a total of 9) (Michael S (chgowiz) rolled 1d6 for a total of 6)
GRAIAN, you see that even on the Seadreamer side of the table, there are great many now nodding in agreement with Shaiman. Vinalin sees this as well and the angry, almost hateful look he shoots YOUR way is not hard to miss. Voices rise again, and now there is a clear direction rising... "Yes, send Seekers." "Seekers must go!" "Yes, send them!"
Vinalin raises his hand for silence.
"Well... Shaiman, it seems that for once in this never-ending Conclave, you have made some sense. Yes, we will organize a party of Seekers and have this... Graian... lead them to this library. He will guide them within and we shall see if your precious answers are there."
A motion is quickly made and a huge majority vote in favor of the Seekers. A cheer goes up on the Foamfollower side of the table, but Vinalin sits, brooding... and continuing to shoot daggers out of his eyes at you, GRAIAN.
It is early evening, with the sun dimming outside and candles being lit, and the day's meeting is finally ended. In a bitter war of words, Vinalin and Shaiman eventually hammered out that eight Seekers would accompany you, GRAIAN to go to the Athenum. Four will be Seadreamers, four will be Foamfollower. The hardest part of the meeting was Vinalin's resistance to "the filth-pig companions" that you have (meaning TAKASHI, TOBIAS and CALLIN) with you, but at the end of the day, Shaiman was able to make it happen. The Seekers will be ready to depart in two days, after outfitting. They will bring a cart, horses and be fully equipped.