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By Jenna Helland A tale of Ravnica


Council of the Izmagnus: Report of Record

Micas Vay: We're protecting you—for now. But the Azorius are demanding justice.

Bori Andon: Justice for a broken window? I wasn't aware cathedrals had such tender feelings.

Micas Vay: This is no laughing matter.

Bori Andon: I'm pursuing research given to me personally by Niv-Mizzet.

Micas Vay: Look around you. This chamber is filled with the best and brightest of Ravnica. Your pursuits are no grander than any of ours. Just more destructive.

Bori Andon: You're not worried about a few damaged buildings. You're threatened by my success. Such base emotions are bad for our cause, Prime Izmagnus.

Micas Vay: You must stop these dramatic displays. You must stop drawing the eye of the lawmakers.

Bori Andon: I have followed your directives!

Micas Vay: Lower your voice, Andon. By order of this council, your current projects are placed on hold. The Firemind has assigned you a special task. It must be completed before you can resume your personal research.

Bori Andon: What task?

Micas Vay: Solve the Theorem of Simultaneous Discordance.

Various: [Shouting, arguing...]

Bori Andon: You can't derail my research. I am on the brink of-

Micas Vay: Sit down or you will be removed from chambers!

Bori Andon: This is absurd!

Micas Vay: It's the so-called unsolvable theorem. Are you familiar with it, Andon?

Bori Andon: Of course...

Micas Vay: The question is this: Can a single person simultaneously ring all seven bells in the seven great bell towers? Many great minds have tried, but each has failed. They say it's impossible. Are you clever enough to prove them wrong?

Bori Andon: You don't have the authority!

Micas Vay: This comes directly from the Firemind. If you don't like it, you may sever your ties with the Izzet.

Bori Andon: You're a bastard, Vay! This is your doing. Well, I prove you're a—

Micas Vay: Guards! Remove this man from chambers.

Various: [Shouting, arguing...guards escort Andon from the chamber]

Micas Vay (addressing council): Well, he's gone. His ego will get the best of him, and he'll try to solve it. At least it will keep him out of trouble, for now. And what's the worst that could happen? All seven bells will ring.

Various: [Laughing...]

The Journal of Bori Andon: Day One

I awoke to the sound of chimes. From my bedroom window, I can see two of the seven great bell towers of the Kalnika Quarter. I grew up here and I've heard the bells every morning since I was born. At dawn, the bells share a harmony, but each rope is pulled by a different bell ringer. How could one man ring all seven at once? This is the council's attempt to humiliate me. They task me with an "unsolvable" problem. Well, I'll show them. Nothing is unsolvable.

Despite the grayness of my outlook, the bells are startlingly beautiful. In my half sleep, I imagined myself in an immense room filled with staircases that lead nowhere. I must have dozed again. In my dreams, I paced blank corridors with no end. I turned a corner and recoiled at the sight of massive sentinel seated on a silver throne. His eyes followed me, no matter what direction I ran.

The dream is an omen. They'll be watching my every move.

Watcher's Report

Subject never left his flat

The Journal of Bori Andon: Day Two

I traveled across two districts to visit an old friend, Zaba, who makes the best maps in all of Ravnica. As I hoped, he had exquisite maps of the Seven Great Bell Towers. His work is so finely detailed that I could practically see the rat holes in the walls. Suddenly, I can make sense of the confusing tangle of elevated walkways, the bridges over nonexistent rivers, and the multi-level streets that I knew by heart but could never have quantified.

Over cups of tea, Zaba entertained me with the legend of Kalnika, a great paladin for whom my quarter is named. I felt like a child at my grandfather's knee as Zaba told a tale of ancient Ravnica, when a lich king tyrannized the people. The paladin taught the peasants a series of codes rung on the bells. When they heard the right sequence, they knew it was time to rise up en masse and kill the tyrant. According to Zaba, the towers have a particular order. There is only one route through the quarter that allows you to visit the towers in proper sequence. He gave me a toothless smile and told me if I could find the right path, my true love would be waiting for me around the corner.

When I told him of my trouble with the council, Zaba gave me the maps at no cost. He said something about the meaning being in the journey itself and we parted ways. On the street, a man with black hair trailed me for three blocks. It doesn't surprise me that Vay sent one of his thugs to follow me. Well, he can watch all he likes. I have nothing to hide.

Watcher's Report

Our interrogation of the mapmaker yielded little more than we already knew. Subject continues to search for solution to the Theorem of Simultaneous Discordance.

The Journal of Bori Andon: Day Three

I wore a hole through my shoe leather, but I've done it. Zaba's silly comment about the "true path" gave me an idea. I discovered the singular route that takes me to each of the bell towers once and only once. It was a fascinating exercise in the geometry of place, and the interconnectedness has left me both weary and hopeful. Ugh, it feels like rats are eating the backs of my eyeballs. I must sleep.

Watcher's Report

Walking. Walking. And more walking. The subject talks to himself. He seems confused and often concerns passersby with his flapping and scurrying about. We really don't think the Theorem is in danger of being solved. I request reassignment.

The Journal of Bori Andon: Day Five

My Hypno-Imager is complete. I've devised a way to transfer the "true path" in three-dimensional space while accommodating natural obstacles and the historical information I received from the mapmaker. This will allow me to find the perfect center where I will be within equidistance to each bell. I have calibrated the imager so I can transmit sonus-ripples, which will strike the bells and cause them to ring simultaneously. I can't wait to see the look on Vay's face.

Watcher's Report

The subject exited his flat carrying a brass box with cords attached to large glass vessels strapped to his back. The vessels contained some bluish liquid and fog. The subject made his way to the center of the Kalnika Open Market. You know that enormous statue of a centaur? Well, he climbed up on top of it and sat down like he was about to ride a horse. Then he fiddled with his contraption for ages. People were staring at him like he'd lost his mind (I think he's lost his mind). At one point, blue light shot out of the device, but nothing else happened.

The Journal of Bori Andon: Day Eight

When will this headache cease? Even the slightest noise feels like an assault. My Hypno-Imager failed, but I know why. In my next attempt, I must use elements already existing in the environment. The air itself is the answer! Wind will be my invisible accomplice. I have successfully recalibrated the imager. My new device, the Hypno-Explusor, will suck a massive volume of air inward and then expulse it in a radial pattern, causing the bells to chime. I'm slightly concerned about the displacement of this volume of air. I anticipate that residents will feel a slight to moderate breeze, and that is all. I can't spare time to run tests. The Firemind is waiting.

Watcher's Report

Suspicions about subject's sanity are confirmed. He's sitting on the centaur again. And he has a new device. It still has the brass box and the glass vessels. But now there's a hat-like component. And by hat, I mean a towering pile of copper wire and pipes. He's fiddling with the box. There's a strange whooshing sound. Huh, the rubbish in the gutters has just started hovering. I have a bad feeling about this.

Azorius Incident Report

Just after the clocks struck nine, residents of the Kalnika Quarter reported a strong breeze on an otherwise calm day. The breeze intensified and shattered nearly every window in the quarter. The broken glass and debris coalesced near the Dome of the Black Dove. Abruptly, it transformed into a cylindrical cyclone of glass shards and continued to gather strength. At its peak, the glass-storm was taller than the Dome itself. Residents in a three-block perimeter were evacuated. A joint force of battlemages worked to contain and disperse this massive threat. Their efforts were successful, and there were no deaths reported in the incident. The grounds of the Dome are littered with broken glass, but the structure itself has been saved.

The Journal of Bori Andon: Day Ten

Wrong, wrong, wrong. That approach proved fruitless, and the bells did not chime. To complicate matters, the man with black hair was watching me again. He's probably reporting my failure to the council and they're all having a good laugh at my expense. Also, birds keep flying overhead. I've heard that pigeons can be trained as spies. I see now that wind was too prosaic of a solution. I must convert the energy of people's thoughts and propel it to the Great Bell Towers, thereby ringing the bells. How much is the weight of thought? How much energy does a person's brain emit?

I have recalibrated the imager again. This device—the Hypno-Oblatrix—will collect and condense all thoughts in the vicinity of the bell towers. I'll then transmit the converted energy of those thoughts directly to the bell tower thereby ringing all the bells simultaneously. Those affected will feel a tingling along in the forebrain... oh, scratch that. I have no idea what they'll experience.

Watcher's Report

They haven't even finished cleaning up the glass yet, and he's back. He's carrying another device. I can tell it's new because the hat is even taller. Judging by the faces on the passersby, it's emitting foul-smelling fumes. Request permission to leave post. I'm going down below to watch from a safe distance.

Azorius Incident Report

A mass mind attack has just been launched on the Kalnika Quarter. There have been widespread reports of memory loss, disorientation, and bleeding out of ears. Suspect or suspects still at large.

The Journal of Bori Andon: Day Ten, Addendum

The Hypno-Oblatrix failed to ring the bells. But something amazing happened instead. I activated the device, and people fell to the ground like ragdolls. As planned, I transmitted the collected energy toward the bell towers. Unexpectedly, I saw hundreds of glowing lines crisscrossing the air like metaphysical threads. Because of my location, I could see that each line intersected with the great bell towers. What could they be? Borderlines? Conduits? Sensors? What is this madness?

I'm terrified of the implications. I've uncovered some kind of secret Æther channels running throughout the quarter. The bell towers are nexus points. Maybe Niv-Mizzet tasked me the theorem not as a punishment, but to uncover this baffling secret. I was meant to find this, but what did I find?

Watcher's Report

Well, I'm shocked. Dumbfounded. I don't know what to say. That quack did it. He didn't ring the bells, but he found our secret conduits! He revealed our telepathic network, including the use of the great bell-towers as the transmitter nodes. We need to get our hands on that device and kill him quickly. The entire Kalnika operation is threatened.

The Journal of Bori Andon: Day Twelve

I write this in a dingy lodger's house at the edge of the quarter. I returned to find intruders in my lab. They captured me in the foyer and continued ransacking my equipment. They wore masks and thick gloves and smelled musty. One had my Hypno-Oblatrix and kept demanding information on how it worked.

They meant to kidnap me. Maybe kill me. But I was saved by a pair of Boros investigators who showed up at my door, and the two sides got into a fight. In the midst of the chaos and fire, I grabbed my journal and my spare imager and scurried out the secret door.

I have set myself up here in this pitiful room meant for thieves and miscreants. I've already resourced the components I need to recalibrate my device. Now that my enemies have showed their hand, I realize what I was meant to do all along. Niv-Mizzet didn't just want me to find the channels. He wanted me to destroy them.

Watcher's Report

We were in Andon's flat, but some Boros investigating the mass mind attack arrived unexpectedly. While we were silencing them, Andon slipped out a secret door. Who knows what he's planning to do? All operatives must focus on finding him. And will somebody please get an enforcer? This is getting out of control.

The Journal of Bori Andon: Day Thirteen

I write this from a filthy pipe near an entrance to the undercity. My enemies are everywhere. They mean to kill me. I fear they are in my head twisting my every thought. I must write down the events of the past few hours so I will never forget. I can't allow myself to be manipulated. The council must hear this news. Yes, Micas Vay himself. I must warn them that we're all in danger.

I completed a new device designed to destroy the Æther channels—to scourge them from the world with fire. In the moments after I activated the device, the channels glowed, flickered, and then exploded. Threads of fire zinged through the streets. Unexpectedly, the sky darkened with storm clouds. The earth trembled under my boots. In the distance, the glorious Dome of the Black Dove crumbled like sand. The pain inside my brain was intolerable, so I turned and fled.

As I ran, something slammed into my back and I fell to the ground. I was dragged to my feet again by man with yellow eyes. He wore a single spiked glove, and his voice sounded hollow and unreal. He said:

You're causing the Dimir a great deal of trouble.

The man dragged me through a red door and into a dark passage. I attacked him there, but he was strong beyond all expectation. He lifted me off the ground by my throat and slammed me against the wall. When he spoke, I could see my enemy's true nature—a vampire.

And then he invaded my mind. He told me to listen to the bells. The bells would give me my orders. But before he could completely infiltrate my consciousness, I flipped the switch on the imager strapped to my chest and blasted sonus-ripples at the monster. Startled, he reeled backwards and let go of my throat. I fled the burning streets, where I managed to elude him in the chaos. I will spend the night in an ashbin on the highest roof I can find. I pray that I am high enough to avoid the bells. I must avoid the bells. I must avoid the bells.

Watcher's Report

Andon escaped the enforcer. But it's for the best, because the enforcer might have eaten him. Now that news about the capabilities of Andon's device has reached the highest levels, our orders have changed again. Do not kill! I repeat, do not kill! We are to subdue and capture. Bori Andon is going to become one of us. I enjoy the thought of a sleeper agent in the highest echelons of the Izzet. The crazy ones are always the most easily manipulated.

The Journal of Bori Andon: Day Fourteen

I write this from inside an ashbin on the roof of a tenement building. Forgive my poor penmanship, for the light coming through the slats is dim and the air is clogged with dust.

They're following me. Their shadows are codes to one another. There's a sentry mocking me on every rooftop. But they can't make their move because my ears are filled with pebbles and glue! They cannot lure me with those damnable bells. I must make it to Nivix. I must find the dragon and tell him that I've been corrupted. But the streets no longer make sense. I keep finding myself on a bridge that I can't cross. No matter which way I turn, I find myself facing the other direction and walking the way that I've just come. It's the edge of an hour. Time for the bells to start ringing. If I hear the chimes, my enemies will take over my mind, and I will lose myself forever.

Azorius Incident Report

Every bell in the vicinity of the Kalnika Quarter rang at once. There were widespread complaints of hearing loss, headaches, and disorientation. The bells rang with such force that several were sundered in half. Three of the great bell towers were damaged by the reverberations. Under Article 90903.35b, this is classified as an act of arcane maliciousness, not a random event.

The Journal of Bori Andon: Day One

I have begun a new journal. I searched my lab thoroughly, and while everything is in order, my old journal is nowhere to be found.

Today at the council, I was greeted by a standing ovation. The seven great bells had rung at once, thereby solving the Theorem of Simultaneous Discordance. They wanted to know how I did it, but I demurred. It wasn't me, I insisted. I can tell they think I'm just being modest. Maybe I did ring them, but I honestly can't recall.

A few moments ago, a courier knocked on my door. He brought a package sent by an anonymous person. It's a present, of course, because today is my birthday. Inside was a delicate silver bell with the most delightful tone. It now hangs in my foyer. I hope that one day I get to thank my secret admirer.