Ask Luna #82

From: Brad

I may have missed it somewhere but could you explain the theory and magic behind constructs?

So, this isn’t something I have any first-hand experience of, but I’ve sat through a bunch of classes and heard a bunch of bits and pieces from Alex. The way I understand it, there are basically two ways to make constructs. The first is like making a magical computer. You get an energy source, tie it to a few animating spells, then add a sort of “program” that works as its brain. It doesn’t have any actual intelligence, so the instructions have to be really simple, and it can’t take initiative or think for itself. On the plus side, since they’re basically just lumps of matter with no internal organs, they’re pretty tough, so they’re good for dangerous work.

The second way is to get a magical creature like an elemental and bind it into a pre-prepared vessel. Basically you trap the thing and use it as the power source and the brain. It makes a much more powerful construct, and it doesn’t need fuelling the way the regular constructs do, so long as you don’t have any problem with the “enslaving a sentient creature” part. Those kinds are called golems, and they’re quite a bit rarer than the first type.

From: Jim

Hey Luna,

I have been thinking about the events that led to Alex having to exit the UK and you taking your journeyman tests.

Now, I am sure that Alex told you that Hakun warned him about Levistus at the end of the White Rose Affair. My question to you is doesn’t Alex seem to be really passive about this threat?

If I were Alex, I would have done a bit of World traveling and gambled my way into some money to hire a dozen or so assassins to kill Levistus. That would seem to be prudent to me.

Why do you think Alex sat around waiting to be killed?

Oh god. Where to start?

Alex already has plenty of money. Here’s the thing about money: it can only buy stuff that’s for sale. “Make a person on the Light Council dead” is not a thing that’s for sale. The only people who’d be able to do something like that probably don’t work for money.

I mean, let’s say you do find someone who’s scary enough to kill a master mage. Try and think about what would happen if you went up to them with a bag of cash and told them to kill one of the highest-ranking people in magical Britain. What’s easier for them – getting the money by killing Levistus, or by killing you?

From: Magnus

Hi, Luna. I have two rather average length questions.
Firstly, if a young diviner walked into Alex’s shop, how do you think he would react? The only other diviner I can remember him interacting with is Helikon (more than likely the wrong spelling, sorry), who’s Alex’s elder; he’s closed off and isolated. Would he treat them the same way he’d treat the other young mages and adepts who walk into his shop?
Secondly, I read, I believe in Taken, that it’s gotten to the point where you can come into contact with something without leaving any of your curse attached to it. Does this also work with people? Because if so, would that mean you’d be able to do things such as high-five people?

First one: I don’t think it’s ever happened, but it’s kind of interesting to think about. I have a feeling he’d probably try and take the kid under his wing. He’s got a bit of a mother-hen instinct that way.

Second one: Yes! And it was really, really satisfying. It’s taken me literally years of work, but it was worth it.

From: Todd Robinson

Hi Luna,

Did Alex ever tell you how he and Starbreeze met? or why Starbreeze gave him the summoning rod?

He did actually tell me the story, but it was a long time ago and I’ve forgotten it. He didn’t tell me why Starbreeze let him use the rod, but it’s not hard to guess – she just decided she trusted him.

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3 Responses to Ask Luna #82

  1. Jim Sackman says:

    Well, Luna this is Jim….following up on the question that I asked. You keep thinking small and face to face. I think that anybody can be taken out (with enough money) in 1 of two ways:
    1 – The silent poisoner who just passes by and gives someone an instantly leathal drug (or really near instant). Seems likely to me that you could do so given enough time. I have dreamed up some possible ways of doing this with magical means, but I am thinking purely mundane here.

    2 – Over the top violence. As it was said in a movie, “Nuke em from orbit, just to be sure.” If you level a square mile with a Master Mage in the middle…he is dead. This can be done with a large amount of explosives. Fill a truck with C4. Drive it into his house. Yes, the wards destroy the truck house…but the C4 levels everything in the vicinity. The shockwave alone would kill him.

    That is what I mean…find a MUNDANE for hire assassin and pay him whatever $1B for example.

  2. Eikfo says:

    Hey Jim,

    Rebounding on your above, I think you’re going too cold war/Hollywood style in your line of thought. And now, you’re made me wondering if Landis can deflect a Nuke with his crazy fire mastery.

    Anyway, from what I’ve heard on the grapevine, there was a weird discussion about some wizard murder in America that implied some sniper from afar.

    Since Levistus is rumoured to be an Mind/Air mage, shooting from afar with something that goes faster than sound may be efficient, assuming you could organize it on Council territory without anyone hearing about it and using it as leverage for one thing or another.

  3. Jim Sackman says:

    Hey Eikfo,

    I think I read about that as well. But I am just thinking all kinds of crazy things like: Well fill a Tractor Trailer (I am not sure what you call them in the UK) with C4 and have it robotically piloted into Levistus’ House.

    I recognize that these are big money projects, so have Alex go win $1B or so…and have some fun. I was thinking Bond Villain by the way….or WWGD…What Would Goldfinger Do?