Welcome to Magic Arcanum. I'm Ryan Gomez, here to talk about the Magic story.
Today we're on Chronicle of Bolas: A Familiar Stranger, the sixth of eight episodes for Core Set 2019, available now.
Yasova, Naiva, Baishya, and the rest of their group have reached their destination, which is Ugin's Tomb. They leave Tae Jin behind with a few guards because they still don't really trust him, and then begin to move deeper into the canyon that houses Ugin's body.
First though, Yasova calls out, trying to warn the hunting party that is supposed to be camped here about their arrival. They get no answer back, which is a little suspicious, because they would never leave the outpost empty.
Sensing danger, Yasova and the twins cautiously approach Ugin's grave, by way of a secret passage.
Inside this hidden tunnel, Yasova reveals to the twins lots of interesting artifacts, pieces of clothing, even drawings on the rock walls, all telling the history of her people. She plans to pass all of this on to the girls so that they can protect it once she's gone.
The three of them keep moving forward and come to a vantage point where they can see one of their own scouts making contact with what appears to be the only survivor of the hunting band camping here at Ugin's Tomb.
They watch in secret as the scout talks to this lone woman, who looks to be pregnant. She says an illness killed everyone else and she's been having terrible dreams and she desperately needs help from Yasova specifically.
From her hidden position, Yasova recognizes the shape of this person as a friend named Mevra, but something about her seems way off.
Yasova says she needs a closer look, and leaves the girls behind so she can go investigate Mevra. Meanwhile, Baishya feels Ugin trying to communicate with her and is compelled to go deeper into the canyon, closer to the hedrons that surround Ugin's body.
Hedrons are these little triangle things that are all around him, keeping him safe and helping him heal from his big battle with Nicol Bolas, by the way.
So Baishya walks right up to one on the canyon floor, finds it has a little hidden door on the bottom, and climbs in. Her sister follows, and the two of them pass out and start to receive a vision.
We get to see more memories from Ugin. Some time has passed, and he's become curious about what became of Nicol Bolas back on Dominaria, so he planeswalks back there, and is upset to see that their birth mountain is now covered in shrines devoted to worshiping his twin brother. So he leaves again, figuring Nicol is just as egotistical as he remembered.
This is kind of like when you Facebook stalk your ex and see that they are still terrible. But with Magic!
So Ugin spends thousands of years exploring countless worlds, trying to get his mind off his brother, but eventually his curiosity gets the better of him and he returns again to Dominaria in search of Nicol Bolas.
He arrives right in the middle of Nicol fighting with Arcades Sabboth, and tells them to knock it off. Arcades runs away, and Nicol is kind of frozen in shock.
He snaps out of it, and eagerly shows Ugin how much of the land he has conquered. They fly all over, touring these massive battlefields, until they return to the birth mountain. This time there are no temples there, only a giant pair of horns carved out of the top of the mountain.
Nicol asks what Ugin thinks of his achievements in burninating the countryside, and Ugin is not really impressed. Essentially he says "this amounts to nothing, compared to what I've seen as a planeswalker," and he kind of takes a dig at Nicol by saying he expected better of him.
Nicol is eager to prove that he's powerful enough to conquer anything, if only Ugin would share his secret to traveling between worlds, and that's when Ugin realizes he can't. He assumes Nicol doesn't have the spark which would permit him to walk.
So Nicol gets mad, accuses Ugin of lying to him, and Ugin decides once again that he doesn't need this, and planeswalks away.
At this point, Naiva wakes up, and for her, the visions end. Her sister is still passed out and maybe receiving more visions, and Naiva has a moment where she starts to doubt how much of this is true.
Just as she's thinking it's all made up, she realizes somebody is coming down the path into the canyon. It's Yasova, and she's wondering why the girls left their hiding place.
Naiva explains as best as she can and even makes a point to say how much she is starting to doubt the truth of these visions. Yasova expresses her own concerns because she's pretty sure Mevra is dead and they are dealing with an imposter. She checks her granddaughter's eyes and asks if she's been hearing any whispers in her own head.
Yasova concludes the only way to get to the bottom of this is to join Baishya inside the hedron to try and hear more of Ugin's story, so in she goes. Naiva seals up the opening behind her, and is about to go back to the safety of the hidden archives, when Mevra starts walking down the path into the canyon.
Naiva digs in her heels, and confronts this familiar stranger.
After Naiva points out that her feet aren't even touching the ground, Mevra gives up the ruse, and her face peels open and out pops Nicol Bolas himself. He promises Naiva everything she could ever want, if only she would tell him where he can find Yasova and Ugin.
Naiva asks why, since Ugin is already dead, and Nicol Bolas says yeah that's what he thought too, the first time, but he's here to finish what he started, with her help - making her the mightiest of all dragon hunters.
Will Naiva help Nicol? Is he going to use mind control to force her into revealing the secrets of the hedrons? We'll have to wait to find out because that's where this week's story ends!