There are a myriad of mystical forces and principles in the world which may be taken advantage of by those who dare. Many of the more known Magic Arts take advantage of at least one of these forces.
Tapping into this one force is considered extremely hazardous, it is nonetheless an extremely potent form of energy and there are always those who have been tempted by it. Chaos magic is potent, but it is a highly fickle form of magic. Chaos magic is prone to do things of its own accord and may often work against its user, or stop working entirely at crucial moments. Chaos magic also wears out the body of those using it, as mortal bodies are not meant to harness the power of Chaos. With potential for tearing holes in reality itself, Chaos magic is outlawed and its users are generally hunted down by mages.
Deodate translates roughly to the Will of the Gods, and is similar to the Planar powers. These powers exist only as an extension of a deity. They are principally used in the magic art of Mantra and accessing them involves prayer and sacrifice in most cases.
To explain what a familiar is, it is generally much easier than explaining how one manages to get one. Familiars are a creature which has been attuned to a particular magician, the exact manner of the creature depends entirely on the magician. A traditional choice is cats, those with less of a traditional bent may choose imps or gargoyles or any manner of strange creature that they can bend to their will. There are both advantages and dangers in having a familiar, many use them as messengers and with the special bond that comes with having a familiar comes being able to see through its eyes and feel what it is feeling. The negative side of this means that if the familiar is in pain, the magician will feel it, if the familiar is killed the magician will be grievously injured through their mental link and may be ill for days. Familiars are created through an intricate ritual which is known to most magi.
The precise nature of a geis is one that is difficult to understand. At its most basic, it is a magical contract forcing the one it has been placed on to do certain tasks or avoid certain things. While a geis can constrain someone from doing something they would otherwise do, it is always dependant on the willingness of the one it is cast on for its effectiveness. For a person to enter into a geis, he has to be willing to enter into it, using coercion or lies to make someone accept the geis will lessen its effectiveness. A completely voluntary geis will render the one who has the geis placed on him unable to not comply with the points of the geis. Some cults use a geis to keep their followers from doing things they should not. There are also examples of mages who will not let anyone into their towers without a geis being placed on them to not destroy or hurt anyone inside.
This is the very power of the Earth itself. The Enclosers tap into it to create their powerful fields. It runs in veins through the Earth and some places may be more potent than others. An Encloser can do many strange things through halting or increasing the flow of certain parts of the energy of the Leylines.
The Numen is mystical force which resides in all sentient and non-sentient life forms. In some the Numen is more potent than in others. These are those few who can manipulate the art of High Magic, and indeed it is the pinnacle of High Magic. Use of the Numen through High Magic has varied results, such as exhaustion, nose bleeds, death through overuse and also slowed aging. Others also rely on the Numen to sustain their Magical efforts, though these forms of Low Magic use the Numen in wildly different ways. Necromancers, for instance, pervert the Numen and turn it into something they can control. Alchemists make use of Elixirs which temporarily alter the Numen of those who drink them, causing many strange effects. The bleed off of the Numen is what causes the creation of Auras, which may tell you many interesting things about persons. High Mages, for instance, are immediately recognizable by their Auras.
Many strange things can be found on other Planes. There are those who like to seek out these things and summon them through opening portals to these Planes and bargaining with them. Planes are not countries, they are more akin to alternate existences and may vary extremely from Plane to Plane although certain Planes, such as Faerie, have even had embassadors in the courts of the Arameian Empire. It is believed that Adylheim lies at something of a Planar crossroad, making it very easy to go from anywhere on this Plane to anywhere else, making it attractive to many who wish to move from one place to another.
Certain words are believed to hold inestimable power when uttered, though merely possessing them may cause horrible effects. Geomancers believe that words of power are merely a stronger version of sigils. Alchemists believe they originate from the gods themselves, that they are part of the make up of the world. Words can be used by anyone, though they are extremely hard to find as they cannot be written down or spoken aloud without triggering them. Even keeping a Prime Word in one’s head can have profound effects on the caster.
Prime Words are in almost all cases divided into two camps; the Greater Prime Words and the Lesser Prime Words, the former being words of inestimable power such as described above, although they aren't what is usually referred to when one speaks of Prime Words. The Lesser Prime Words are words containing focusing power, such as what is used in Summoning and Mantra, these words not actually capable of performing feats on their own, but getting the attention of someone who can. It is believed that Lesser Prime Words are related to True Names.
Known Greater Prime WordsEdit
Klaatu: stops time, temporarily
Nikto: death (causes all who hear it to die)
Plugh: opens a dimensional rift
Quintessence is believed by Alchemists to be something similar to a Numen residing in all things. It is the acting agent in the majority of their Elixirs and items. The Quintessence remains something of an elusive myth to others, though the Alchemists claim it is the equivalent of an echo of the power of the Numen or the Divine Principle which was used to make it.
Resonance is one of the oft used forces in magic, the basic idea is that things which are similar will affect each other. It can be used for a variety of purposes, the most common is that of using something which a person held dear to track their whereabouts, or the construction of magical fetishes which allow one to inflict harm to a person from afar. It can also be used to find other things, such as water, precious minerals and similar. Resonance can be hindered, though doing so means undergoing several painful processes to painfully alter oneself so as to become disparate from the object through which the Resonance magic is used.
By a process called “Bleed off” by the Auramancers the creation and ending of life creates energy which may be used for a variety of purposes. Nefarious necromancers have been known to create magical machines which require a constant stream of sacrificial victims to operate. Most capture this energy by trapping it inside sigils and channeling it towards specific purposes. While it is theoretically possible to gain the same energy by having a birth take place inside a sigil, such events are much harder to time than death due to their nature. Using human sacrifice to power one’s spells is generally outlawed though lesser forms of it. Using animals or plants, are generally frowned on, but not immediately illegal.
There is said to be power in certain geometrical shapes, the most powerful of which is the circle. The Circle is a repeating phenomenon in magic, be it from the necessity of protecting oneself from others or for creating prisons. Other geometrical shapes also have power and are often used, especially by Enclosers and Summoners. The study of these Sigils and similar recurring phenomenon is referred to as Geomancy. Though Sigils are employed especially by Summoners and Enclosers, they are a part of nearly every form of Low Magic to some extent.
Some creatures can be bound by their True Names. This is especially true of extra-planar entities such as demons. It is also true of mages however, and those mages who lose their true name to a hostile entity may find themselves in dire straits. To most people however their True Names have little significance.