A Station Eight Fan Web Site
I found this on the GargsWiki http://gargwiki.net/File:Archmage%27s_time_loop.png
Did you do that? I still don't fully understand it. How did the loop start? Did the future mage pop out of thin air?
I didn't make that chart, but it looks correct. And it seems pretty clear to me. It's your question that I don't fully understand.
The "future" archmage was enchanted by himself and goes back in time. From the standpoint of the original archmage, it seemed like he emerged from a portal of fire.
Watch the episodes again.