Ask Luna #137

From: Seth

Not a question per se; although I love the books and your running answers. Just a comment about your response to ask Luna #124. My daughter proudly thinks of herself as a Hufflepuff. As she explains, every other house had at least one person who went traitor. Not Hufflepuff, who were decent to the core. Keep up the flow of great stuff!!!

Heh, fair point.  I should have guessed when I wrote that, really – just because one house has got a ‘protogonist’ label on it doesn’t mean that people won’t identify with the other ones.  Which I did when I was younger, too, come to think of it.  I guess that’s what fanfiction is for.  

From: Sam

Hey Luna ,these questions have to with the three magic types that Richard may be, divination, mind and enchantment, unless there are other likely types I am missing. 

1. Can enchanters/charm mages make themselves less attractive or less noticeable to others? I remember Richard seeming exactly average in terms of age and appearance and that would be a great way to throw people off, but at the same time the charm mages we have seen so far are good looking and well dressed so is this even possible since personality drives magic?

2. Regarding mind mages can they influence people as effectively as enchanters or is it more of different approach but similar goals kind of thing? Honestly they are hard to tell apart from each other at times. 

3. Do other diviners use magic items or manipulate Elsewhere like Alex as well as Alex does or is that just because he is for lack of a better term unique/awesome mage in general?. (You and the others are too an awesome mage he could not have run the mage shop or survive for so long without you Anne and Vari looking after him!) Are there other magic types that have more of an affinity for Elsewhere or is it more just based on individual mages who use it over time?

1. Yes, though it’s not as well known because they always get pigeonholed as the seductive/femme-fatale types.  The mage who goes out of their way to look as un-special as possible isn’t going to get as much press.  Though all the charm mages I’ve met have been pretty far on the extrovert side, so it’s hard to imagine them keeping it up for long.  

2. Charm mages and mind mages are like ice and fire mages in that they can accomplish very similar things but do it in different ways.  Charm magic tends to be subtle and persuasive, mind magic is blatant and brute-force – a mind mage will command you to do something whether you like it or not, a charm mage will make you think that you want to do something because they asked you so nicely and they’re such a great person that you just want to make them happy.  

3. No, those just happen to be Alex’s specialities.  And thanks!

(I don’t think there are any magic types that have an affinity for Elsewhere.  It’s a very obscure/rare thing to specialise in.)

From: Dakota

Hi Luna,

It was implied that some of the more… unique focuses and one-shots were moved to storage, and probably not lost when the shop burned down. You’ve probably accumulated some more of these items since then as well.

Have you managed to sell any of these curiosities? If so, do you remember any amusing examples?

Actually, I pretty much had to start from scratch as far as that goes.  A bunch of the really dangerous and powerful items from the safe room got saved from the fire, but Alex took those with him and hid them afterwards.  He didn’t hand them over to me, and I didn’t ask, mostly because they were the kind of stuff you really shouldn’t be putting up for sale.  

So when I opened up, the magic item section of the Arcana Emporium Mk II was pretty much completely empty, and it stayed that way for a while.  It took me a long time to build it up again, and it’s still pretty meagre compared to what it used to be.  I used to feel self-conscious about it, but on the other hand, it’s kind of nice to look at the modest selection I’ve got now and know that it was all my own work.  

From: Kevin

1. Is there a reason why time mages are more trusted than diviners on the Light Council? I believe in a previous Ask Luna you said that Diviners could bring up the wrong evidence which is why the Council was 50/50 on them but would time mages be any different wouldn’t their timesight also pickup evidence/unwanted events even if they did not intend to see it?

2. Is there a reason why Chance Mages would want to be on the Light Council? The Council does not like chance or disorder so why would Change mages want to join a place they would feel unwelcome?

On a side note I understand why you did so because they would have killed you otherwise and in fact tried to do afterwards which makes me wonder how many mages will be on the Council when this is all over?

3. Do time and chance magic have any similarities to each other? I remember how you said you felt Alex understood your magic better than others, did you get something similar with Sonder or at least better than other magic types?

1. It’s a good question.  I think it’s because time mages can be pointed at a target a lot more easily than diviners can – if you meet a time mage and a diviner on some random street corner then the time mage can’t see anything special about you, but the diviner can.  So the Council can use them to find out other people’s secrets without having to be so worried about their own.  

2. They don’t.  The Council doesn’t like chance mages much (you hear the word ‘witch’ a lot) and the feeling’s mutual.  Back when I was looking for a teacher I went looking for a Light chance mage who might fit the bill, and it was slim pickings.  

3. With Sonder, it was actually the opposite.  He was nice enough, but I didn’t really get him at all, and every time he tried to figure out what I was thinking, he seemed to get it wrong.  I haven’t got on with any other time mages I’ve met, either.  

From: Isaac

Has Levistus been losing any influence/power with all that has happened since he crossed paths with Alex? Losing the Fateweaver, the incident with Belthas, White Rose, the failed death order on Alex and general assassination attempts, the conflict with Richard’s Cabal escalating, and Alex’s rise to a Junior Council seat, I can’t see how anyone would think well this guy is the winning horse.

The thing about those incidents you’ve listed is that the only one where Levistus lost out publicly was White Rose.  The rest of the time, it was either his personal beef with Alex, or stuff that no-one on the Council was happy about (Richard and Morden).  I don’t think Levistus having his personal grudge with Alex has helped his image much, but most people on the Council don’t seem to care enough to pay much attention.  

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