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 Post Posted: Sun Oct 07, 2018 10:37 am 
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Phillip Roffercy glowered across the courtyard at his foe. "Laugh it up, Peelburger. If you knew what was Fated for you it'd be a lot harder to keep smirking.

The Retconjurer, Evens Peelburger, grinned back with more than a trace of smugness.

"Really, Predictamancer? After all you've seen by now, you still believe your visions of the future can trump my revisions of the past?"

---

He'd been relieved when Queen Coco agreed to his proposal, despite her reluctance to send both her casters into the field.

Not that Phillip could claim credit for convincing her. If Fivechannel weren't in such a precarious position, and if the Chief Dollamancer herself hadn't been so insistent, he doubted whether the Queen would have consented.

For too many turns now the war against Doomray had become more and more costly. Fivechannel still had its share of significant victories, but any encounter which had a chance of swinging in the enemy's favour invariably did so. Phillip had suspected a Luckamancer's involvement, until the Duchess Angerbanner told him she recognised the tell-tale Signs of Retconjuration.

As the more experienced caster, Angerbanner was better able to hold onto memories of how events had unfolded before they were changed. Once Phillip understood what was happening, he learned to identify those memories too. Like what happened at Fourche-à-dos.

He had Predicted that Fivechannel would capture the city, and they did, taking heavy losses in the process. Reinforcements were sent to secure the site, but they arrived to find Fourche-à-dos held by Doomray as it always had been. Everyone knew that Fivechannel had never captured the city, leaving the whole court - including Queen Coco - utterly bemused as to why such a small force had then been ordered to enter the enemy stronghold without siege.

Of course, Retconjuration had limits like any other discipline. Casting still required juice. Spells with a bigger impact required more juice and a higher level caster. That was why Fivechannel wasn't losing all its battles, Angerbanner explained; a decisive victory would be almost impossible to undo, whereas one which depended on a few crucial moments going their way could be taken apart by reversing the outcome of each of those minor events. For the Retconjurer to be targeting them so effectively suggested he was working with a Lookamancer to identify the moments that most merited his intervention.

As the Doomraiders continued to press their advantage in the tenturns after Fourche-à-dos, it became clear to the Fivechannel casters that their side's survival depended on neutralising the Retconjuration threat. Convincing the Queen of what was behind their misfortune was difficult, as she had no memories of the rewritten events and was inclined to blame Phillip's 'failed' Predictions, but eventually the Dollamancer was able to talk her round.

So when Phillip Predicted a direct encounter with the Retconjurer which would give Fivechannel a chance to eliminate him completely, both he and Angerbanner were in no doubt that as much resource as possible should be committed to that engagement. The Chief Caster, leading a max stack of her emmykins (a basic, humanoid Dollamancy construct) and guided by Predictamancy where possible should be a formidable force in any circumstances, and supported by regular infantry and archers they would be near-unstoppable.

---

Well, so much for that plan. As soon as they encountered the enemy group in the ruins of Crystiaur, Phillip had noticed that 'doubling up' of his memories which had lately become so familiar.

Queen Coco had not allowed Angerbanner to go with the army, preferring to keep such a valuable asset in the capital rather than risk her in the field. The Dollamancer would no doubt be furious on realising this, but she was now too far away to have any chance of getting back to her stack before the fight was well and truly over.

That left the emmykins and other units to be led by the Predictamancer, stripped of their bonuses. It was still a fairly even fight - as long as it remained fair. Little chance of that with the Retconjurer active and leading the Doomraider troops.

So he had drawn his counterpart away from the main skirmish, doing what he could to avoid further interference.

"I gotta say, I'm surprised you're still here," jibed Evens. "My spell was meant to get rid of both you casters. Guess your Queen doesn't really care what happens to her Predictamancer."

Phil's cheeks flushed red with anger and Punky hissed from his shoulder.

He needed to find a weakness in his opponent. Peelburger must have spent some juice to remove the Duchess from play, but there was no way of knowing how much; and even with his own juice full, Phillip Roffercy would be relying on basic Shockmancy, so doubted he could best the level 7 Retconjurer in a firefight.

He chanced a whole-oaten anyway. It missed. No surprise there.

"Fortunately for me," Evens continued without batting an eyelid, "King Lucas sees the value in all his casters. He recognises potential -"

The Retconjurer's speech was cut short by a huge rock which crashed neatly down on top of his head.

Phillip blinked in surprise. As the boulder rolled away, he saw the plus-size emmykin which had thrown it turn her attention to a small mob of enemy stabbers. The now-unled Doomraiders were already starting to scatter and would easily be routed.

He looked down at Peelburger's crossed eyes, then stepped over the mangled body to rejoin his troops, firing a final retort at the corpse:

"Retconjure that."

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     Post subject: AUTHOR'S NOTE
     Post Posted: Sun Oct 07, 2018 10:40 am 
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    I've been wanting to explore the possibilities of having Retconjurers on Erf.

    From the wiki it seems this school of magic is considered too powerful to be used by anyone but the Titans. But it occurred to me that casting on a Titanic level in any discipline is potentially devastating - it's only the limitations of mortal casters (juice, time, the individual's knowledge and experience and awareness of a situation...) which keeps them all from being OP. Why would Retconjuration be different?

    Still, I imagine Retconjurers would be hated, feared and shunned even more than Carnymancers, simply because of what others imagine they are capable of. Even if most units accept they will croak one day, the idea of being erased from existence without a shot at the City of Heroes must be pretty terrifying for Erfworlders. Most rulers would probably disband Retconjurers as soon as they pop for that reason alone. Any which are allowed to live would be personae non gratae in the MK, so knowledge of their existence would be mostly limited to rumour and an occasional mention in libraries.

    Predictamancers would naturally be the arch rivals of Retconjurers, not only because of examples like Peelburger apparently undoing Phillip's Predictions in the story above, but because Fate magic could effectively neutralise Retconjuration by finding a different path to the original result. This rivalry also gave me an excuse for shoehorning "full Phillip Roffercy" into the text ;)

    Hope you enjoyed this little thought experiment!

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