Sus le pont d’Avignon

Sus le Pont d’Avignon
L’on y danse, l’on y danse
Sus le Pont d’Avignon
L’on y danse tous en rond

Les masques font comme ça
Et puis encore comme ça

This whimsical song, perhaps to be made famous in later centuries as “Sur le pont d’Avignon” (French: “On the Bridge of Avignon”) by mistranslation, and disguised by a change of melody and additional mundane verses over time, is the key to accessing the Coenobium’s main Avignon covenant site of Sub Pontem.

When sung in the local Occitan dialect of Provencal correctly in tune (requiring a Sing roll against an Ease Factor of 9 or an Avignon Lore roll against an Ease factor of 6), while standing beneath the central arch of the bridge on the Isle de Barthelasse (not on top of the span like the later version implies), it acts as a trigger for the main entrance to the subterranean areas of the covenant, allowing entry into the complex.

Although some of the individual consuls have laboratories or sanctums with their own concealed and often guarded entrances, all the underground rooms ultimately connect to the main portal chamber beneath the bridge. Although the covenfolk guard the secret of dancing beneath the bridge closely, it’s catchy tune may popularise it among the mundane population, potentially posing a significant security risk over time.

Translated from French (I don’t know the Occitan sadly), the above chorus and mythical verse becomes the following:

Beneath the bridge of Avignon
We all dance there, we all dance there
Beneath the bridge of Avignon
We all dance there in a ring

The wizards go like this (gesture)
And then like that (2nd gesture)

The first gesture is the Hermetic hand pose for “Rego”, while the second mimics the finger position used to indicate “Terram”. The genuflections and song merely satisfy the triggering action for a minor enchantment that opens the door set into the stone pylon of the central arch and do not actually cast a spell, although the mundane covenfolk believe this latter misconception to be true and are proud they have been trusted with such magic by their masters “beneath the bridge”.

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