CCC: My Wet Hot Phyrexian Summer - Part 1: Birth of Phyrexia

We're excited to continue Coast to Coast Casual (CCC), a blog series written by East2West, published on MTG Cardsmith.

Phyrexia, that big infectious mofo that slinks through the multiverse. In October of 2010 this oily jerk of a plane set its sights on Mirrodin, my favorite plane. I followed the conflict heavily and I lost my goddamn mind when Mirrodin lost. So here I am, 8ish years later and a whole lot smarter, ready to prove that Mirrodin should have won the war. Ladies and gentlemen, planeswalkers and eldrazi, legendary creatures of all subtypes I present to you literally the most asinine essay I will ever write.

Phase 1 (Birth of Phyrexia)

To understand the war between Phyrexia and Mirrodin let's turn back the clock to a time before Phyrexia even existed. See the story of Phyrexia starts on Dominaria, during the reign of the Thran empire. We start our story about midway through the life of Yawgmoth, a eugenist on the republican side of the Thran civil war. Yawgmoth was obsessed with the human body, believing it to be a sort of imperfect machine. When the was came to a close the republicans had lost and all participants were exiled. During his exile Yawgmoth would enact multiple atrocities including a vivisection of the Viashino Bey and turning the creeping mold of Argoth into a horrible flesh eating disease that would end up killing of most of the population.

After five years of exile Yawgmoth was called out of exile to the Thran capital of Halcyon. The chief artificer, a man named Glacian, had contracted a form of radiation poisoning after being stabbed with a powerstone by a rebel named Gix. Word of Yawgmoth's deeds hadn't reached here yet so they had reason to trust him. Glacian's infection would turn out to be the first recorded case of phthisis, this will come into play later. Gix's rebellion was composed mostly of exiled Thran who had contracted phthisis due to exposure to powerstone mining rigs. Yawgmoth managed to develop a serum that cured the rebels, thus quelling the rebellion. Yawgmoth went on to use his newfound notoriety to enter politics within the city. Soon he became a trusted member of the city's government and was soon elected head of public health. During this time Glacian's disease got worse and worse, all of Yawgmoth's attempts to heal him were completely ineffective. Soon it would be discovered that Yawgmoth was diluting the serum he was giving to the rebels, he claimed (falsely) that is was due to a lack of resources. This blatant lie roused Gix once again and a second rebellion started to form. Soon before the actual rebellion started a planeswalker named Dyfed arrived in Halcyon to seek the wisdom of Glacian due to him having an unignited planeswalker spark. Yawgmoth overheard their conversation and manages to convince Dyfed to help him. Dyfed agrees to help Yawgmoth find a plane on which he can construct a paradise. Not long after Gix's second rebellion breaks out. Utilizing a powerful artifact based on Glacian's designs Yawgmoth gains control of all Thran artifacts and uses them to defeat Gix once again. A couple weeks later Halcyon holds a festival in Yawgmoth's honor, all is well until a strange group of delegates appear.

These delegates are a group of the 25 nations that Yawgmoth experimented on during his exile, they call themselves the Thran Alliance. These delegates tell all of Halcyon about Yawgmoth's deeds. A vote is held to decide if Yawgmoth can stay, the vote is 50/50 with the deciding votes being Rebbec(Glacian's wife who's fallen for Yawgmoth) and Yawgmoth himself. The vote ends in Yawgmoth's favor. Directly after the vote Yawgmoth overthrows the council and has all who voted against him as well as the delegates imprisoned. Dyfed than uses a powerstone to permanently make a portal between Dominaria and a new plane, the plane on which Yawgmoth will make his paradise. Since Yawgmoth wants the plane to study and cure Phthisis he names it after the disease hence Phyrexia. At this point Phyrexia was basically Mirrodin, a plane of artifice and life entwined. Yawgmoth binds himself to this plane, essentially becoming a god while within the plane. Soon he starts to bring Phthisis patients over and begins to implant them with empty powerstones and other metallic implants, thus draining away their sickness and creating Phyrexian oil as a byproduct (Phyrexian oil causes advanced mutations and Phthisis on contact. This process will become known as Phyresis) Soon these new inhabitants begin to evolve becoming leaner, faster, and stronger. These mutants became the first true Phyrexians.

With this powerful new entities at his side Yawgmoth became almost invincible, fighting the Thran Alliance with ease. Seeing the horrors she had helped make Dyfed turned on Yawgmoth and an epic battle ensued. Yawgmoth defeated Dyfed by shoving a power stone knife into her head, disabling her spark. He hoped to dissect her and learn the secrets of planeswalking, however Rebbec removed the dagger in an act of mercy and in doing so killed Dyfed. However not all went well for Yawgmoth. His excessive use of powerstones resulted in a death cloud hanging over Halcyon, held back by a group of artificers powering a Null Sphere. These artificers betrayed Yawgmoth and ended their live thus dropping a layer of pure death onto the city. All its inhabitants either fled to Phyrexia or were eaten away. Rebbec used the very powerstone that had stabbed her husband and started it all taken to betray Yawgmoth, closing the portal between Phyrexia and Dominaria seemingly forever.

To be continued in Part 2: Invasion of Dominaria

East2West is an aspiring writer from NJ currently seeking fame and fortune on the internet. She's been playing Magic since Zendikar block (the original one) and is a commander player with one deck for each two color pair and one for each single color. The only non EDH deck she plays is her own personal Pauper brew, Pauper Eggs. Follow her on her newly created and probably soon to be underused twitter @East2WestMTG.

Nov 22, 2018 by East2West
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