Ask Luna #31

From: Josh

Hey Luna,
In the last lot of questions you mentioned fate magic, and how it’s a sort of opposite to divination. Could we get more info on that? An Encyclopedia entry, maybe?

The basic idea of fate magic is that it can set future events that can’t be avoided. At least, that’s what I was told.

The thing is, though – and I don’t know why – you don’t get human fate mages any more. There are legends that they used to exist, but nowadays they’re either incredibly rare or all gone. So there isn’t much information floating around on how it works, because there’s no-one who actually knows the answers. (Well, okay, there’s the fateweaver, but for obvious reasons no-one really wants to try that.)

From: Elaine Felicity Green

Hi Luna,

Am I imagining the chemistry between Alex and Anne?

Yeah . . .

The short answer is no, you’re probably not, and that worries me a bit. I love Anne, and she’s my best friend, but . . . she’s got some pretty major stuff going on under the surface. It doesn’t come up when she’s doing mage things – she’s an amazing healer, and she works really hard with her patients. And most of the time it doesn’t come up when she gets hit on, either, because the guys who do it are usually looking for something really superficial. If anything happened with Alex, though . . . well, that probably wouldn’t be superficial. And I’m not sure what’d happen after.

I don’t know. I guess we’ll have to see.

From: Kravix

Hi Luna,

I was just wondering about the difference in training between light and dark mages.

Alex was going crazy trying to find somebody to take in both Ann & Variam for training that matched their specific magic.

While Richard had four different apprentices with different types of magic. How could he possibly taught each of them more then the basics.


Basically the question is: what are apprentices really supposed to be learning?

For Light mages, it’s all focused on magic and academic stuff. So they take one apprentice, and they spend ages training them on their own. And so this makes them really picky, because they’re only expecting to take one apprentice every ten years or so, maybe only one apprentice ever. They’ll usually only take apprentices of the same type, too, because they want to do all the training themselves.

Dark mages do it differently. They take a bunch of apprentices and have them compete. And they don’t really care what your magic type is – they’re more interested in what you can do. The thing is, you don’t actually have to take an apprentice of the same magic type as yours. As long as you’re the same family you can teach them the basics, and if you’re really good then you don’t even need that. Sure, you’ll eventually need to get them a teacher of the right type, but that doesn’t mean they need to be standing right next to them every minute of the day.

It’s different attitudes. Light mages want to take the perfect apprentice and build them up over years and years into the perfect mage. Dark mages just chuck all their apprentices in the deep end and let them sink or swim. One’s a lot easier to get into than the other.

From: John D.

Hey Luna!

Thanks for answering my last set of questions. I just came up with another few, and I hope you don’t mind answering them.

What does it take to be able to make a one-use item? Does Alex have to go to a force mage to get those force disk things of his, or an ice mage to get a freezing item? And what about imbued items? I assume they’re not easy to make, but do you have to be a particular type of mage, or get help from a magical creature, or is some other factor necessary?

Also, are magical creatures capable of wielding multiple “types” of magic? It seems that Arachne is using a pretty flexible power set when she makes things, and I was wondering if it’s because it all fits a theme (i.e. magical items she weaves can have a variety of effects) or
if she (and others) are capable of more than one flavor of magical ability?

Finally, what kind of powers do rakshasas wield? I’m sure that Jagadev doesn’t go advertising what type of magic he wields, but is there anything you know about their capabilities as a species?

Easiest way to make an item is to be able to cast the spell the item duplicates. So if you’re a force mage who can cast force walls, then as long as you understand item crafting, it’s not hard to make a forcewall one-shot that anyone else can use. Mages sell or trade the items they make, usually to item specialists who make a business out of selling or trading the things on in turn. Alex does a little of that himself, but he mostly gets his stuff from another mage called Lensman.

Arachne is . . . different. Basically, magical creatures don’t play by the same rules as humans. Things that are hard for us are easy for them, and stuff that’s hard for them is easy for us. For Arachne, she just seems to be really good at creation in general. I’m not sure if she could make something like a forcewall, but she seems to be able to put together nearly anything you can think of as long as it’s subtle. Arachne’s pretty high on the power scale, though – I don’t think there are many other creatures still around that can do what she can, and there definitely aren’t any humans who could put together an imbued item that easily.

As for rakshasas, they’re supposed to be warriors and illusionists. The stories are that they can take the shape of any other creature they like, and they’re very powerful in one-on-one combat, too.

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