Dorian's shapeshifters (was nature of magic)

Melissa Proffitt Melissa at Proffitt.com
Thu Jan 11 02:14:18 EST 2001


On Wed, 10 Jan 2001 17:10:15 -0500, Nat Case wrote:

>I dunno about matter-energy. The imbalance at the scale we're used to 
>dealing with is so immense (the c2 in E=mc2). Nuclear dragons are a 
>neat image, though.
>
>You could also have a creature accrete surrounding matter to gain 
>size/mass (that's how we grow naturally), and secrete it to reduce. 
>Every time you shrink you leave a pile of dust (or something 
>else...ewww), and every time you grow you need to use dirt 
>(ooh...Biblical/golem echoes), or a tree, or gold (to become a 
>dragon?).
>
>Interesting question, Dorian...

Yes, very.  This brought to mind something Carl Sagan liked to say, about
humans being "starstuff", because all the higher-order atoms in our bodies
were created in the hearts of old stars.  Wouldn't it be interesting if you
could choose which kinds of atoms to accrete/secrete, in gaining and losing
mass?  Literally putting yourself into your spells....

And speaking of golems, I just read _The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and
Clay_ by, um, Michael Chabon.  Wonderful, fantastic stuff, especially if you
love comic books--and a great running theme on the Golem and Harry Houdini.

Melissa Proffitt
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