11 thoughts on “The Final Calling: Progress Report Twenty-Three

  1. A prudent tapestry-making wizard retains all sketches and other preliminaries, right? In many cases, restoring a tapestry destination to a known state would be much cheaper than commissioning a new tapestry.

  2. A prudent wizard would keep such records, yes, but can he still find them after 17 years? What if he’s passed away or gafiated* like Fendel?

    The Wizard’s Guild strikes me as too loosely organized to have a central archives department.

    But here is a speculative work-around: The Greater Spell of Invaded Dreams (assuming it works between universes). Send someone through, and if they can’t get back, use the spell to talk to them about what the inert tapestry shows. Send drawings of the existing attic through the first tapestry if needed, but coordinate that with the person on the other side first.

    I forget do tapestries work on inanimate objects? But remember, if you toss an inanimate object through, you’ll block the tapestry until someone on the other side moves it.

    I need to reread “With A Single Spell”; I have forgotten how they fix the blocked tapestry problem there.

    *Gotten Away From It All, i.e. become a recluse.

  3. They use a dream spell (the Lesser Spell of Invaded Dreams? I can’t remember at the moment) to get Perrin to drag the skeleton out of view.

    On another note: so much for Vond’s newfound prudence. If he’s flinging guardsmen about, I would expect that the Overlord will want him dealt with, even if the Wizards’ Guild wasn’t already inclined to take him out of the picture.

    It sounds as if Hanner himself may be seriously considering a new life in the tapestry. I wonder if Rudhira will join him? I’m still not sure if her story arc is going to end in tragedy or not.

  4. Nice chapter. Big step in the direction of getting this resolved. Yes, it does strongly support that absolute power has corrupted Vond absolutely beyond redemption.

    Here’s a question. The new tapestry shows the edge of the benevolent little village. Does that mean that the tapestry will admit one person and then stop working until that person gets out of line of site of the view? I could see that is you got 100 people in the village, there would be significant problems with access to the new world from people blundering into the tapestry “view.”

    And that was definitely the Lesser Spell of Invaded Dreams in Single Spell. I read that one by myself and then aloud to both my sons before they could read themselves. Got both thoroughly hooked on reading, thank you.

  5. There are other potential problems with a tapestry for an outdoor scene: What about birds? Time of day? Clouds? People or animals moving in the background?

    Of course, there could be variants of the tapestry that can handle such things. We know of two main variants: time-shifting and blocking. Perhaps a tapestry that depicts a large enough scene is a third variant that can handle minor variations without doing either.

    Obviously, all tapestries can handle some tiny changes. No scene is ever precisely the same from moment to moment. There are always dust motes and insects and whatnot shifting around.


  6. Bill, in the original short story version of “The Warlock’s Refuge,” the scene in the tapestry had clouds in it. In Chapter One of the novel, it doesn’t. (I forget whether I changed the short story.) That was because I realized they could indeed be a problem.

    It’s going to gradually register later in the novel that the tapestry world’s sun never moves — it’s always the same time of day there, so shadows don’t change.

    Anything too small to resolve with a single stitch of tapestry yarn won’t affect the tapestry’s function.

  7. Would it be possible to use a divination to determine if the return tapestry is still functioning, without having to send somebody through?

    It seems like the sort of precaution Hanner would take, but I don’t know enough about what Ethsharian divination can accomplish to decide if it’s practical.

  8. Hmm. That opens up a series of other questions. If there are no clouds, how do the plants (and settlers!) get water? If the sun is always in the same position, that could have some odd results–like, say, no grass whatsoever in the shadow of a tree or building, because no sun EVER falls there.

    It’s interesting that both of the tapestry worlds we’ve seen so far seem to be “frozen,” in this way; it’s as if the tapestry was capable of creating a world with the conditions depicted, but not extrapolating from it to create day and night, seasons, ans so forth.

    I wonder if worlds created by a tapestry will always be “fixed” in this way? If someone created a tapestry of a (nonexistent) sunset beach-world, would the beach always be frozen at sunset?

    I also wonder how the spell came to be discovered in the first place.

  9. “I also wonder how the spell came to be discovered in the first place.”

    It seems likely to me that this is one of the intentionally designed spells, given the length of “casting time” and resources that must go into it. I suspect that one of the great spell designers started with the premise that they wanted to make a magic portal and intuited the ingredients and procedures, then used divination magic to ask, “So will this work if I try it?”

    I also suspect that the “create a universe” option was a later variation.

  10. Fascinating to talk about tapestries, isn’t it? Ben: just a thought, if you showed a beach scene with waves, that would imply a circular world with a larger weather systems to produce them. As they mentioned in one of the earlier novels, you might then be “held in transit” until the tide matched that shown in the picture.

    I’d be hard-pressed to call any world without surf paradise.

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