Ask Luna #78

From: Margaret

Hi Luna

I wondered who supplies the one shot items Alex uses so much. I get the impression most mages would see is as beneath them to stoop to manufacturing and retail of such routine magical items so I wondered where they come from.

Yeah, you’ve put your finger on why they can be hard to get hold of. One-shot items aren’t as common as they can be, and a big reason for that is that most mages who can make them, won’t. From what Alex says it’s actually pretty easy to learn to churn out the things, but most mages don’t do it and the ones that do tend to keep them for themselves.

So to get one-shots, Alex either has to find one of the handful of mages who don’t mind doing that kind of grunt work, or he has to get them from adepts. It’s much harder for an adept to make a one-shot than it is for a mage, but since there are so many more of them, the amount of one-shots produced by adepts outnumbers the amount produced by mages by quite a bit.

From: Kurt Von Bosse

Hi Luna,

I’ve been thinking about the British Light Council and from a political standpoint it seems to me to be a rather odd organization. It began long ago perhaps during Roman times. Rome was an Empire when Briton was conquered. After the Romans left the country devolved into a number of petty kingdoms before eventually becoming unified (more or less). Today Great Britain can be described as a constitutional monarchy.

Throughout most of the world and through most of recorded history the majority of governments have been one form of monarchy or another. So my first question is do you know if anyone has ever tried to make himself or herself King or Queen of the Mages? It seems with all those examples of Caesars, Kings, Czars and Emperors running around someone would have at least tried to pull off the same trick in mage society.

Now actual political power in Great Britain is not held by the reigning monarch. I won’t bother describing the actual system, you already know that, but it does involve individual citizens voting for political parties. There doesn’t seem to be any voting by rank and file members of the Light Council. Any votes that do take place only occur at the highest levels of the Council. When you were going through apprentice training was any explanation given for how this system came to exist?

Finally, if I had to find a parallel between the Light Council and a mundane form of government, the closest example I can think of would be the medieval and early renaissance Italian City State Republics. Though these republics granted some rights to their citizens they weren’t democratic and instead were ruled at the highest levels by competing political factions, just like the Council. Unfortunately, pretty much all of those republics eventually fell to despots, sometimes from without, but often from within. It looks to me like Richard Drakh and Mage Morden might be trying to do the same thing. Do you think my example fits or do you have another one? From Chalace’s descrition of what happened to the Council in India does it seem to you it was taken over by a despot or perhaps a junta of some sort?

This is more the sort of question you’d go to Sonder about, but from what I vaguely remember, yeah, it does happen from time to time. Main thing stopping it is other mages. You’re right, mages do like the idea of being king or queen, but they like the idea of someone else NOT being king or queen even more. Think of it as kind of like a society of cats. When everyone wants to be king, no-one is.

The compromise is how we ended up with the Light Council. You’ve got an oligarchy, and then the aristocracy, and then everyone else. I think it basically evolved out of the collection of the most powerful people in Light mage society. None of them would bow down to the others, so they had to work together, which they didn’t like, but they liked the other options less, so here we are.

But this is also one of the reasons why most mages don’t get involved in Light politics at all. If they stay independent then they don’t have to take orders.

From: laz

Hi mage Luna thanks for taking the time to answer my questions.

In Ask Luna #67 you talk about someone weaving everyones fate…if that is happening, could that be arachne? I ask because after anne gets burned in burned Alex has a weird vision quest and sees anne/arachne…..

Next question I assume there is a reason Alex didn’t just call in a terrorist bomb scare on your apartment? My assumption is that levistus/the magical world would REALLY not like the publicity and possibly backdown.

Finally whats up with the blue unicorn thingy that is above you in google, when you google “ask luna” (at least when doing a google from the USA).

thank you

laz
Ps how old is alex 😉

Alex is 34.

I can’t actually remember what I wrote that long ago. Did I really say something about weaving everyone’s fate? I know Arachne’s pretty powerful, but I don’t think she’s THAT powerful. Would have thought it’s more likely just to be a dream.

Alex didn’t call in a bomb scare because Levistus’s goons would have just pressed the button and killed me. And yes, he checked. You’re really overestimating how scared these guys are of publicity. I mean, Alex has been stabbed in the middle of the Empire Casino, chased down the platform of Stratford station by a psychotic air mage, and nearly blown up by a rocket launcher on Hampstead Heath in broad daylight. If they seriously want you dead, it’s going to take a lot more than that to scare them off.

And as for the blue unicorn, I’ve got the feeling you’re probably looking at a My Little Pony site or something.

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3 Responses to Ask Luna #78

  1. Christine Russello says:

    Hey Luna, I know Alex has had crazy problems of late and the suggestion has been made for him to gather more personal power. What would a fruitful avenue for him to gain more magical power be… it seems mages expand their powers but not clear how he would do it.

    And secondly, I hope you learn to control your powers sufficiently to get a date sometime, you deserve one !

  2. Logan Mayfield says:

    Hey Luna,
    I was just wondering how many types of mages/magic there are. For example illusion magic didn’t even come until book 6, then that light magic that lumen used in the bubble realm in book 7 hasn’t even been given a name. Just wondering. Thanks!

  3. Theo Moulton says:

    Hey Luna Ok, going over ancient history is probably a tad silly but something Alex said has been bugging me for the last three books or so. He implied to Onyx that he had a way of gaining access to the fate-weaver again if he needed to. At the time i thought it was a bluff but then… well i read three more books and saw just how devious he is. I mean i realise with the ancient ghost of a megalomaniacal general tied to it that using it is basically the equivalent of playing backgammon in the core of a nuclear reactor but i’m still curious to know if he’d risk it.