Elkord took up the cause of his master and learned from his mistakes. Whenever he spoke of a client's fortune, he carefully chose his words so as to be innocuous and vague. His visions were no less distinct, yet the unvarnished truth was to be avoided, lest it earn him ire... or worse. To remind him of his departed mentor's misstep, Elkord always wore his red cloak whenever he conducted a ceremony.
The augur was a priest and official in the classical world, especially ancient Rome and Etruria; who foretold events by observing and interpreting signs and omens. His main role was the practice of augury, interpreting the will of the gods by studying the flight of birds: whether they are flying in groups or alone, what noises they make as they fly, direction of flight and what kind of birds they are. This was known as "taking the auspices." The ceremony and function of the augur was central to any major undertaking in Roman society—public or private—including matters of war, commerce, and religion.
The derivation of the word augur is uncertain; ancient authors believed that it contained the words avi (stem of avis "bird") and gero Latin for "directing the birds", but historical-linguistic evidence points instead to the root aug-, "to increase, to prosper." "Auspices" are from the Latin auspicium (to look, to observe in order to make a prediction; to see omens) and auspex (-spex, "observer", from "specere"), literally "one who looks at birds". Nowadays a synonym of a seer or prophet; a soothsayer.
Artwork by Zinna Du.