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Pan Post 120 opens with the Toiletium in Seattle where Archmario is at his desk and answers the phone to Dr R. Deep. Deep believes there is a weakening of magic and to confirm an issue Bob Roberts calls from his apartment to tell Archmario that the toilet is flushing very weakly. On Mount Olympus, Hermes Trismegistus is reading a book he made of all the magic he could recall from a glance at Runekeeper's book in Pan Post ?. He feels the weakening of magic and espies the aether pouring out of the Pacific Ocean and into space and being consumed by Mega Jonestown Prime, as in Pan Post 117. On Tatooine, Fladnag the White receives a call from Lobo Ono informing him of the syphoning from Earth. Lobo Ono and the Void Rangers are to protect Earth from as much damage as possible.

Post

Backlash

In the Toiletium - the new center for magic on Earth, based in Seattle where the new ultranexus is - the mage leader Archmario sits at a desk. He wears a crooked wizard hat and red overalls covered in mystic sigils. His staff - an extremely long-handled plunger - is propped against the wall behind him. There are two phones on his desk: one is beige, and the other is red.

The beige phone rings.

Archmario: Wizards R Us Plumbing Company, Archmage Mario Miyamoto speaking.

Doctor R. Deep: Archmario, did the ultranexus plumbing foul up again? Aetherial concentrations of magic have weakened all over the planet!

Archmario: Not to my knowledge, there's been no word from--

The red phone rings.

Archmario: Nevermind, he's calling now. I'll fix the problem ASAP.

He hangs up the beige phone and picks up the red phone.

Archmario: Wizards R Us Plumbing Company, Archmage Mario Miyamoto speaking.

Bob Roberts: Mister Miyamoto--

Archmario: Please, call me Archmario.

Bob Roberts: My toilet is malfunctioning again!

Archmario: Did it explode again?

Bob Roberts: No--

Archmario: Get stopped up?

Bob Roberts: No--

Archmario: Spawn a hundred imps?

Bob Roberts: No, thank god, I'm still cleaning up imp manure from the last time--

Archmario: What's happening then?

Bob Roberts: It's, er, well, this is going to sound very pedestrian compared to the usual issues, but it's flushing very weakly.

Archmario raises an eyebrow. Doctor R. Deep had just mentioned magic growing weaker planetwide. Archmario had felt it too, but had assumed it was only a stomachache.

Archmario: Not worry, Mister Roberts. I'll be right over.

***

On Mount Olympus, home of all 'mythological' Terran deities, Hermes Trismegistus is sitting cross-leggedly in midair over the center of a pentagram, with glowing candles at each point. A massive book is held on his lap, and he flips through the pages. Many of the pages are blank, but many are also covered in script and diagrams.

This is the deity's incomplete copy of the Runekeeper's sacred tome, which contains all magic in the NeSiverse. Hermes had once bargained with the Runekeeper to see a single page in that tome, but his super-fast processing had caught glimpses of all the pages through which the Runekeeper had flipped to get to the single page he'd intended to show Hermes.

This book in Hermes' lap was transcribed from that memory, and he has devoted all his time to poring through it.

Hermes Trismegistus: Chimaat? Isn't that one of the God-Monarchs?

He has his finger on the name written on the opened page of the book, chewing his lip thoughtfully. The book does not identify her beyond that name.

Hermes Trismegistus: ...bestowed upon the Runekeeper the collection of all power and knowledge she had gathered from throughout the multiverse-- Holy sh*te, is that why there's so much power concentrated in the ultranexus? It was taken from all over the multiverse???

His musing is interrupted as he feels the sudden weakening of Earth's magical field. Intuition prickling his senses, he sets the book down and zooms up into the sky from Mount Olympus, higher and higher until he achieves orbit, looking down to survey the lattice of ley lines that glow to his mystic sight.

Hermes Trismegistus: It's been pulled...channeled elsewhere. But how? Why?

He follows the ley lines to the force that is pulling them, and espies the undersea hedrons channeling the aether up into space. And he feels the rumble through the interdimensional flux, as Mega Jonestown Prime shimmers back into known existence.

Hermes Trismegistus: Bollocks. Their final fight against Highemperor is about to begin, if they're back...but couldn't they choose a battleground away from here?!

He supposes not, if Mega Jonestown Prime wants the ultranexus's constantly generated magical aether as fuel...

***

Fladnag the White has just finished dismissing the futilely optimistic Coach of the Tatooine Ski Team when his earpiece beeps.

Fladnag the White: Fladnag speaking.

Lobo Ono: Sir, Mega Jones--

Fladnag the White: I already know. I'm dispatching forces throughout the NeSiverse in preparation for mitigating casualties and sheltering refugees. Who knows what collateral damage will be caused by their war against Highemperor?

Lobo Ono: Did you know that they're draining Earth's magic in preparation for this war?

Fladnag pauses.

Fladnag the White: I did not. Threat analysis?

Lobo Ono: Earth will be in for a rough ride, but if this keeps up, the ultranexus will be recentered on Mega Jonestown Prime, and the NeSiverse will keep going like always.

Fladnag the White: ETA to recentering?

Lobo Ono: A few years, at this rate. I get the impression they don't care about the speed of actual recentering, since they're already receiving all new magic the ultranexus generates now.

Fladnag remembers what he knows of the God-Monarchs. A far more tenuous alliance than most know, rather than a true pantheon of common vision. After this war, no matter how it ends, none of them may care for the NeSiverse any longer...which means none will care what collateral damage their war causes.

Fladnag the White: For now, if Earth is still the center, it still needs protection from outside elements. Mega Jonestown Prime can protect itself. You...may have to take precautions against collateral damage.

He speaks the last sentence carefully.

Lobo Ono: I understand, Vizier. Earth will be safe. The Void Rangers will not fail.

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