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Y’know, back in the day, Michelle would’ve responded to this with ‘what the crap?!’
This is all sorts of juicy information! owo b

I do miss the good ol’ “what the crap!?” from Michelle. Also, if it apparently died with the Sphinxes, what does it mean that the Sphinxes didn’t actually die?

It took both the Sphinxes and Ravi to create the Medallions. The way Ravi is speaking, it seems like something of what the Sphinxes did was kept secret from Ravi.
With the Sphinxes going deep into hiding, that Secret would, by necessity, NOT be passed on.
So when the Sphinxes ‘died’, so did their Secret of how to make Medallions.

One line of speculation has been that the medallion must have been made by a sphinx before it can be enchanted. Without sphinxes at hand to make more jewelry, no new medallions can be made. I’m guessing that Michelle has at least a few of her father’s pieces with her, and a small horde at her mother’s house. I wonder, how much of the craft did she learn from him?

I think it’s more likely that the sphinxes have to enchant the medallions. It has been established that Sphinxes have immense magical power. it could be that Ravi helped develop the process, or, since he is a form of nature spirit, supplied special materials that were required for the process. Or maybe it was a cooperative enchantment. Basically, I think that the magical power of Sphinxes means that they had to have some connection to the magical nature of the amulets.

I think you’re on the correct track, Kromac.
Remember that Ravi described the Egyptian Sphinx, Wosret, as being the powerful one.
I think that was in reference to the amount of raw magic power that he could apply in giving the Medallions a long term magical power source.

It may be like the Angelic Medallions from Slightly Damned; they can only be made, customized and repaired by angels, and even then only a special type of angelic craftsman that specializes in them, a career that takes many, many years of training.
Ravi simply might not be compatible with the magical techniques that are necessary to produce and enchant medallions, and does not necessarily possess in-depth knowledge of every step of a no-doubt incredibly complex process.

Well I’m guess I know what I’ll be doing tonight, rereading the archives to see if my memory of Michelle’s father being a jeweler is correct.

I knew it!
So a friend of mine and I never really liked the explanation of why there was a war between sphinxes and dragons. The most it’s ever explained so far is by Jim, saying “sphinxes were very powerful, dragons got jealous” basically. It just doesn’t seem like a good reason to end up in a mutually genocidal war, over jealousy.

But then I thought, wait. Medallions are old, and they aren’t made anymore. Medallions are very powerful magic, sphinxes are very powerful magical creatures. Maybe sphinxes created all the medallions, it would make sense. This seems to be confirmed with this page.

But back to the dragons and the war. Some creatures don’t have medallions, and it’s my theory, dragons never had medallions. The one dragon we see in the comic doesn’t have a medallion, and Kory doesn’t sell dragon medallions. Furthermore, not having medallions would explain why dragons would become jealous, and attack sphinxes over it.

If sphinxes are creating medallions for various species, but not for dragons, I can understand why they’d be very angry. It appears that there’s a bit of prejudice between species that have medallions, and those that don’t, monsters. On top of that, dragons are very large, hard to hide creatures going by the dragon we actually see in the comic. Not having a medallion seems to me like it might have excluded certain species from society and in dragons case, threatened their survival as humans spread across the world, leaving them less and less places to hide. I can see a war like that starting over their need to have medallions.

There were plans from Kory for a possible Dragon Medallion to be made for the Patreon members, back on January 22 this year.
https://www.patreon.com/posts/patreon-ideas-1525131
As things panned out someone suggested Bandersnatch for the Patreon Medallion, and that quickly became the favoured choice.
And the Bandersnatch Medallion has a cool secret detail. :)

But the dragon medallion was meant as a special treat, and part of the discussion was explicitly that she would be willing to make a non-canon medallion for backers. In her note on that particular page, too:

“I thought I could maybe do medallions that wouldn’t be “canon” like a Dragon medallion or a totem medallion.”

In other words, first post still applies: only ‘canon’ medallions are sold via the Plesiostore, and the dragon was a mockup for a definitely non-canon medallion. I suspect Kaye has something going there, that the sphinxes were powerful but perhaps disinclined to make medallions for certain species, for unknown (but possibly not very altruistic) reasons.

And indeed, the Bandersnatch medallion is something that explicitly does not exist in the canon universe. To me, that suggests that a Dragon one would never have been on offer if dragons had medallions of their own.

It seems to me that you aren’t a Patreon, SilverGull, because you have it wrong.
The Patreon Medallion was strictly a Not For Sale Medallion, and was the Milestone Goal for when Kory’s Patreon stream topped $1000 a month.
There were three initial ideas suggested by Kory. Dragon (for Bloodcarver), Fox Totem (for Eustace Swiftrunner), and Chechen Wolf (for Dean Daud).
Someone in the comments suggested Bandersnatch and that idea trumped everything.

I’d love to see a 1 page strip, of Eleanor going to the jewellers and commissioning a Bandersnatch medallion the same as what we Patreons got. Turn our Patreon Medallion into canon.

I had SilverGull’s impression too. I don’t think the presence of these medallions or not necessarily indicates whether they’re canon or not and personally, I’m happy leaving canon be as it is. Kory’s done fantastic work and it needs no modification from me!

Its certainly possible!

It is also possible that perhaps that they were unable to make medallions for certain races.

Like Harpies or Dragons, since there are so many different beings in this world, and each type of medallion would have to be very specific to the race and might need different methods of creating.

Thats my theory anyway. It seems odd they would make medallions for most people but intentionally exclude others. Its likely they COULDNT make medallions for dragons and the dragons believed they were intentionally being excluded.

After looking back at page 5 of Illumination, Michelle’s vision, I believe that the phoenix egg guarded by the Finn family is also instrumental to creating the medallions and maybe the avalon? That’s what the vision seems to describe, Phineas and a phoenix, the liverpool avalon, Phineas using a medallion, and medallions held in tendrils of power or something from an egg.

What I’m hoping for by the end of this is that Michelle will find some way to make medallions for people like Tony, creatures that want to be human but never got the chance. As for Sam, well I think he’s just human.

Yeah, I figured that’s the most likely ending. With a natural progression of fixing her boyfriends medallion, then moving on to harder tasks like making new medallions. This has a natural progression also: for example, making a medallion for the gentleman with the new wings he never wanted.

Plus, advantage of making her super rich, if it works out that way. {grin} Everyone wins!

I’ve also been thinking about that for a while, but my thoughts were spurred by the realization that we’ve met a lot of creatures that have anywhere from no medallion (The various harpies, wonderlanders, Ike, gorgons (although I kinda doubt Madame U would want one?)) to broken medallions (Greg, Myra) to creatures with a non-functional medallion (Sam Hain). It seemed a rather intense confluence of discontentedness with a lack of working medallions for that to NOT be an important theme. And after Michelle’s most recent vision it seemed even more likely to be an important piece of the whole puzzle. I wasn’t sure if that was the way things were headed but this seems to pretty well confirm it.

With the damaged Medallions of Greg and Myra, the damage caused their transforms back to human form to be incomplete.
In Sam’s case, the Medallion was not damaged, but when he received it, the transform from human to fullform failed and STUCK. So Sam has enlarged canines, and golden eagle eyes, all the time.

I CALLED IT!!! I SO CALLED IT!!!

And is anything really that cut-and-dry ever?

Not really. The secret may have died with sphinxes, but who’s to say it didn’t start with them. Not to mention they also had have starting point, a safeguard system and the like. I’ve been thinking it would be interesting if some of the demographics have a natural ability to see through the illusions, which is where the idea of the Avalon guards came in. Instead of checking medallions they just had to take one look someone and have confirmation about them, but over time those types disappeared along with sphinxes for whatever reason. I like to think that Celtic otters, due to their nature allowing them to be just durable as a Nemean lions, actually had clans that possessed the natural ability to see through illusions, which made them excellent choices for the guards of early Avalons. I have yet to see an otter of any kind in the story, I like to think they disappeared suddenly one day, but do to their usual playful nature and tendency to usually segregate themselves off from the rest of the mystic community not a whole lot of folks noticed and those that did really didn’t think much of it at the time.

Wow, I went a rant.

Gosh Darn it, Ravi! What, do you have cliff hangers for your body and spoilers for your blood or something? Every fifth sentence of his sparks off new speculation and confusion!

I love you so much XD

What is has me now wondering is just how much of the History of that time period in the UK for Mythicals has Ravi screwed around with.
So far we have him heavily involved in creating the Finn’s Tomb, causing The Finn Curse, the Disappearance Of The Sphinxes, the creation of the LA, and now the Creation Of Medallions.
It’s like what the Hell else has he done for an encore.

Just had an odd thought….. If someone were to rediscover the craft of making medallions, then maybe poor Anthony the Reluctant He-Harpy could go back to the human world and his supposedly-human life. As much as he wanted to, anyway (which’d be mostly, I suspect.) And maybe Greg could take his hat off in public!

Well, the way medallions work is that once you give it up you can never be human again, if that’s what you were implying. I’d say there may be a way to fix medallions if the art is relearned. Patching up the broken off horn on Greg’s and filling it with magic may reinstate the illusion to include his ears. And perhaps Myra’s as well, although I think she really likes the eyepatch thing and thus wouldn’t want it fixed

I’d say that, just as we’ve made advances in science in the last thousand years from working steel to curing polio, there has to have been advances in magic as well.

Except that there haven’t been (at least as far as medallions go), because all the research on medallions since the Sphinxes disappeared has been focussed on recreating them, and has failed even to do that much. It’s too complex and esoteric. If the secret is rediscovered, then, yes, progress will be made, and maybe quickly since they can fold in things they’ve learned in other areas, but right now we don’t know for sure that repairs are possible, let alone anything new.

The emerging theory seems to be that the phoenix egg is involved in medallion creation. If so, maybe it has to be involved in medallion repair (just as the One Ring could only be destroyed in the fires of the volcano where it was created).

Will we discover that Michelle has dabbled in jewelry work as an at-home hobby, and can make the physical repairs, given the right equipment?

Aaahh….
So sphinxes created the medallions.

Suddenly a great many things make sense that did not before.

Now we know why sphinxes are considered so important…And valuable.

If the sphinxes had the power to create medallions..It also means that had the ability to choose what species got medallions.
(If I am following the logic correctly, and I suspect I am.)

Dragons had no medallions. And medallions allow a magical species to blend into and walk among human society invisibly.

If dragons are or were as power obsessed as the legends imply, then there was a good reason sphinxes would deny them the ability to influence or control human politics directly, from the inside.

I have to assume similar concerns limited the choices of making medallions for other species as well.
Or there was an assumption that these species might misuse the power a medallion gives a magical creature over humans. If they choose to use it in a selfish manner.

So many threads are now revealed in the story…And we still have not seen Ravi’s full part in all of this.

Oh, I am liking this, Kory. :)

-Badger-

Or, sphinxes were the assholes that denied certain species medallions without a clear reason. Probably your theory is the right one, but I’d like for once to read a story where the protagonist is the last descendants of the ancient villains, not of the heroes.

Or was it Ravi that set those limits on who would be allowed to get Medallions?

Or was it totally uncontrollable: Dragons had some inherent magic inside them which prevented the sphinxes from being capable of making the medallions work for them? Perhaps it just simply didn’t work on them.

Personally I like the “sphinxes were assholes who played favourites, and therefore picked who did and didn’t get medallions” line of thinking. They were extremely powerful, as has been pointed out in the past, and that can get to one’s head. If you could make transformation trinkets that could grant a human disguise to a non-human being, and if you were feeling petty or something like it, you could decide who is and isn’t in on the list.

And it makes the feud between dragon and sphinx more believable, than it would be if the reason was somewhere along the line of “Sorry bro – medallions don’t work on your species. Nothing I can do”, and the dragons getting all butthurt because of that.

I like your idea! It could also be that the sphinxes (well, the bigwig sphinxes, I doubt they were that monolithic) did not want to share their bestowed power with dragons in order to stay on top of the local mythical hierarchy (i.e. they were fine with providing goodies for the lower ranks as long as they retained their stronghold of power). Then again, does that mean the sphinxes’ power outweighs the bugbears’ in some key respects?

It WOULD be pretty interesting if Michelle had to contend with her ancestors’ dubious morality…

With great power comes great responsibility, and history is full of people who abused their power.

The possibility of some sphinxes doing the same with their own powers isn’t much of a stretch. With the main difference being that history presents sphinxes in a positive light, unlike historical and present-day human tyrants.

Oh, I am pretty sure our own human history has its share of revisionist idolatry by the pound. But I digress.

It might be that the sphinxes did not seek further power than they had, but, rather, reacted poorly to any change in the hierarchy they were the crown jewel of. The status quo is safe, ergo, any substantial change is inherently inimical. When you’re the top dog, you can get TOO comfy with never feeling the strain of anyone above you like everyone else.

Yeah that’s true. With the right PR campaign you can make a despot look like a saint.

As to sphinx and hierarchy, it makes sense. Sure, some sphinxes must have abused power, but to make it wide-scale enough to result in a near dual genocide would require many sphinxes throwing their weight around, and there can’t have been that many bad eggs in the basket.

However, it would only take a few bad sphinxes to influence the others by making the dragons look bad, and the rest agreeing with them to at least get the ball moving.

Makes me wonder if the dragons were the subject of prejudice the way manticores still are, or like what Greg said in Orientations [about the Momo, not dragons], that dragons were made out to be more dangerous than they actually were, simply because it made a better story.

[Oh the fun of wild mass guessing! :D]

Indeed.
And the perception of heroes versus villains can change long after the deaths of all involved in any specific conflict.

The perception of George Armstrong Custer versus American indians is a prime example massive change in public perceptions after the fact.

During his life, and for most of a century after his death, Custer was seen as a hero who fought savage indians.
In the late 60s- early 70s, Custer became seen as a psychotic, genocidally intent monster.
This was almost entirely due to movies cranked out of Hollywood during the fad for nihilistic, dystopian film making that ended with the introduction of Star Wars.

Good or evil is very much a matter of your point of view- We see good as anything that benefits us, and evil as anything that is perceived as dangerous or robs us of anything.

Very much like the perception of Obi wan Kenobi as portrayed by Alec Guinness- To some people, he was a lieing weasel.
To others, he was a hero trying to do his best with what he had to work with, and attempting to shield Luke Skywalker from a painful reality that could have destroyed him.

All a matter of perspective.

That does not mean that one point of view is always right, and another is always wrong.

Just that everyone has their own way of seeing every conflict and judging it by how it affects themselves.

-Badger-

“Damn any man who sympathizes with Indians! … I have come to kill Indians, and believe it is right and honorable to use any means under God’s heaven to kill Indians. … Kill and scalp all, big and little; nits make lice.”
— Col. John Milton Chivington, leader of the Sand Creek Massacre

Good or evil may be a matter of your point of view, but I find some points of view reeeaaaaaaaal hard to justify.

Dragons may not be able to change their shape, but they apparently do have the ability to change their size. That’s useful if you want to fit into a cave one moment and intimidate an opponent another.

Wait… we’re actually paying attention to Michelle now? Dang, I’m much more interested in Jim’s problems at the moment than Michelle’s. I mean magick hair > figuring out your family lineage….wow, I just realized Jim and Michelle are experiencing the same things…

I don’t know whether to say get your priorities in order or they’re in the right place

Right now, none of the already existing characters priorities are in the right place. Focussing their attention on Ravi, and asking hard, pointed questions.
Ravi was extremely deeply involved in the heart of EVERYTHING causing the current state of play.
Right now, Ravi’s behaviour has me in mind of a prankster, desperately trying to keep everyone off balance, so they don’t realise just how much he has CAUSED.

Everyone keeps saying that sphinxes CHOSE not to make medallions for dragons (and the other monster species). What if they just….couldn’t? For whatever reason, the innate magic of the monster species just didn’t respond well to the sphinxes’ medallion magic, and they were incapable?

Taking this and otherwise following Kaye’s excellent logic about the dragon war, what if the dragons went to war with the sphinxes over this, blaming the sphinxes for not making them medallions and it was all a big misunderstanding? Wars have been started over sillier things.

How about a less complicated scenario for the genocidal antipathy between dragons and griffins. For example, the crafting of medallions requires the unwilling sacrifice of dragons themselves (or their progeny / eggs). Basically, something along the lines of “The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or even the one” as practiced by the more magically powerful griffins. Not a fun thought, kind of darkish actually, but we are discussing how two sentient races tried, and partly succeeded, in wiping each other out.

I had to go back and look at Michelle’s vision again and realized it shows what looked like a gryphon becoming human with the help of a medallion. I’m guessing we’re going to learn how the Sphinxes made the medallions and/or contributed to their magic properties.

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