You are suddenly attacked by a wizard

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Surprisingly, this scenario happens frequently, but fret not: there are methods to this madness, and I have some advice for you (because you’re reading this while in front of a disgruntled magic-weaver and now is the perfect time to do so).


While this does occur when you frequent the northern section of campus, and maybe near the colleges, please do not confuse professors and wizards. They take it without aplomb. Mathematicians and physicists, however, are exempt from this advice.


First and foremost, describe this assailant, because what you can and can’t do is based on your shallow judge of character. 


If you’re being accosted by the quintessential image of a wizard — you know, the whole Gandalf thing, with long robes, a staff of negligible power, and the pointiest hat you’ve seen outside of Halloween — then you don’t have to get immediately combative. The worst thing you have to worry about involves journeys of unreasonable distance, danger, and even the rare swarm of birds to carry you off when they could have two movies earlier. Angel allegory my ass. This wizard is benevolent and carries unknown levels of tobacco, so just find out what the wizard wants. The last time I encountered this type, I traded my broken Walkman and some string for a flask of honeyed moonshine, so go for it.


Wizard archetype B would fall under those who hide everything beneath a trench coat, or look like some sort of street magician. You know the type: they levitate but don’t use their powers in any beneficial sort of way other than to make money and scam the normal. They need immediate addressing because they’re either going to make you donate depressing amounts of money, or they’re going to flash you. Don’t take the David Blaine-ing lying down. You need to rush this opponent and launch them into the bushes. They can’t run, and they don’t levitate without any velocity or mirrors, so if you can book it past a corner, you’re good.


Next archetype of wizard: Harry Potter and Potter-enthusiasts. These “people” have unknown levels of power and seriously, their wands are worse than their bite. You tell me whether it’s more humiliating to be stabbed with shiv-like weapons while they scream “stupefy” or to be standing there observing them wave said sticks at you threateningly. In any case, these people have slight magical reserves, and while it is frowned upon to bruise, maim, or disembowel them, you can ditch the assailant ASAP or incapacitate them with spoilers or plot/racial holes. I mean, only one Asian in the entire school? Really?


You’re saying that none of the above fit your assaulter? That’s quite unlucky. Perhaps you’re facing a wizard of high level and many hit die, meaning I hope you wrote your will recently because “outlook not so good.” While scrawny, these wizards straight out of a D&D session (or LARP if you’re that resistant to change or planar shifts in the atmosphere), have spells up the wazoo and can literally destroy you in an instant. If you’ve got the drop on them, attack them with everything you’ve got: pin them down if you feel they don’t have a rank in Escape Artist; kicks to the shin will most likely knock them down getting you One More attack; run away in a zig-zag serpentine motion if you feel you can’t deal more than 3d10 dmg within 18 seconds. Their spellcasting, while nonsensical, will destroy you worse than finals. 


Worst case serious scenario is that you’re facing an urban fantasy magician — the dark, brooding types that have seen terrible beings and carry guns alongside their magick. You know: Harry Dresden, Felix Castor, or Matthew Swift if you’re a lover of British magick too. Anyway, they’re probably on their way to fight something else in the shadows you don’t know about, but if you can befriend them at the expense of life expectancy, DO IT.


Whatever magic-slinger you encounter, remember that they usually have better things to do with their time than kill some meddling kid who’s solving mysteries. If you’re unsure, just leap in their general direction, chant something vaguely non-English, or even throw that handful of pocket sand you were carrying in case your pimp showed up and you swear you’ll have the money by tomorrow, daddy.  Wizards are people, too. Also, wizards don’t exist, but that doesn’t mean people don’t exist either. A man can dream, can’t he?

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