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The Phoenix Gate

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Diana writes...

Hey Greg,

it's known, that to control the phoenix gate, one has to think of a special place and time.
Now, that the gate was released by Goliath, one question popped into my head.
Brooklyn couldn't control the gate during his Time Dancer adventures.
But could it be that his subconscious mind influenced the gate's „direction"?
Could the gate (or rather the phoenix) have probably sensed his feelings like fears, inner conflicts or wishes?
Or did the phoenix just follow its own reasons without noticing such things?

By the way … I liked the character of Brooklyn before, but it's due to the Comics (especially Clan building Vol. 2) that he became one of my ultimate favourites. ;)

Greg responds...

Mostly, the Phoenix is the Phoenix. Beyond that, we're talking SPOILER REQUEST. NO COMMENT.

Response recorded on November 15, 2012

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Jurgan writes...

"Xander writes...

Can you tell us who was the first (a) person, (b) being and (c) entity to figure out how to work the Phoenix Gate?
Greg responds...

Yes, I can."

Really, you can? I wouldn't think the term "first" could apply to the Phoenix Gate. And I'm not even being sarcastic (well, maybe just a little), but how can something in an infinite loop ever be said to have a beginning or end? Perhaps there's an earliest time it appeared, but odds are it was taken there by someone else, who may have taught this "earliest" person how to use it- in which case, could (s)he really be said to be the first person to have used it? I'm interested in this- do you think of there being a beginning to something like the Phoenix Gate? Or am I just reading way too much into an off-the-cuff smartass remark?

Greg responds...

Mostly, yeah, you're reading too much into it...

BUT.. haven't I already answered this? The first entity to figure out how to work the Gate was the entity that bound the Phoenix IN the Gate.

Response recorded on February 25, 2011

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Xander... frustrated writes...

WHO was the first (a) person, (b) being and (c) entity to figure out how to work the Phoenix Gate?

Greg responds...

The one who bound the Phoenix.

Response recorded on February 17, 2011

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Vaevictis Asmadi writes...

Hello again Greg,

A while ago, before I got a hold of Clan Building vol. 2, I asked you this question:

<<Following up on what Clark asked, how is it that such a powerful artifact, the Phoenix Gate, is used by such a simple incantation that even Goliath, certainly no trained sorcerer, quickly learned it? Maybe I'm conditioned by role-playing games to assume that more powerful magic will always be harder to learn than relatively weak magic, but it seems quite strange to me that the Phoenix Gate incantation, and for that matter the incantation to enter Avalon, are so quickly learned when they seem to be quite powerful spells.>>

You replied:
<<It has to do with the nature of the Gate and of Avalon. I don't want to go into too many details (particularly on the former) when we're so close to the release of the Trade.>>

Reading the vol. 2 trade paperback nicely cleared up for me why the Phoenix Gate is so easy to use and just how dangerous it is! In fact it makes me wonder whether the "incantation" is really an incantation in the usual sense... However, the other half of my question doesn't relate to the Gate, and if there was something in the trade paperback that answered my question... I missed it. Now that the three trades have been out for a while and the Phoenix Gate's nature has been (partially) revealed, I hope that you are in the mood to answer the other half of my question:

What is the reason that the Avalon incantation used by the Magus and Tom, seemingly a quite powerful spell, is so easy to use and to learn? Angela and Goliath seemed to pick it up rather easily.

Thanks and have a nice day.

Greg responds...

I feel I've pretty much answered this. Reread everything above. All the clues are there. And if the answer isn't clear -- well, then good. ;)

Response recorded on September 09, 2010

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Todd Jensen writes...

One of the big changes you made from canon-in-training to canon, in "Clan-Building", was having the Phoenix rather than the Phoenix Gate be the cause of Brooklyn's timedancing. I thought about it recently, and think that it was a good change.

Aside from it providing a good explanation for why it took so long for Brooklyn to get back (it would probably have seem far-fetched if each time the Phoenix Gate appeared during those forty years, he always failed to grab it before it disappeared again), I think it added something to his journey. While we don't know exactly what the Phoenix is as yet, or what its agenda is, the way it was depicted (and Brooklyn's own comments) made it clear that it deliberately took Brooklyn to Scotland in 997, that this was not just some accidental fluke, that the Phoenix has a purpose and intentions like those of any sentient being. Brooklyn isn't being battened about the time-stream by an out of control magical talisman, but is being sent places to fulfill a mission, like Goliath and his companions on the Avalon World Tour. His adventures up and down history, past and future, are the product of a plan, not just the whims of chance. I think it made for a much better story.

Greg responds...

Thanks.

Response recorded on March 12, 2010