Lesson one: What is magic?
Magic is the photon-like energy that is given off by the emotional state of sentient beings. This type of energy is the byproduct of sentience that, when channeled, can be used to affect the world around you. While sentient beings are always expelling magic, the stronger an emotion is felt, the more energy is given off.
If it is not sentient, it will not give off magic, even if it is made up of cells. For example, trees and other plants will not expel magic.
On the other side, as long as it is sentient, it will expel magic, even if it is not made up of cells. For example, if there is a sentient robot, it will expel magic.
Sentient beings can not be directly controlled or manipulated by the means of magic, but they can be influenced by magic. Not everyone who expels magic can channel magic, however. Sentient beings who can not channel magic are considered mortals, and are the majority.
Lesson two: What are sorcerers?
Sorcerers are people who have the ability to channel magic. This ability is typically inherited, and acts as a recessive gene, but it is not uncommon for mortals to gain the ability to channel magic, as there are established ways of doing so.
Halfborn and Fullborn Sorcerers
When it comes down to where a sorcerer's ability to channel magic originates, there are two kinds of sorcerers. Make note that the origin of a sorcerer's ability does not affect one's capability for magic to any capacity, and only affects social structure. The sorcerers that inherited the ability to channel magic are called Fullborn Sorcerers, while those who began as mortals but gained the ability of channeling magic are called Halfborn Sorcerers.
When a sorcerer passes away, their magic clings to their soul and constructs a new vessel for the soul to remain in. When this happens, they are now considered as ghosts or demons. Remember that ghosts and demons are one and the same, but the term, demon, is more frequently used.
Ghosts have the ability to possess people, but it is extremely difficult to accomplish successfully, as the ghost has to convince the body that it's soul belongs there. Because of it's difficulty and does little for the ghost itself, most do not bother with possession.
Ghosts retain almost the same amount of magic they did when they passed away as sorcerers, and can still channel magic. The amount of magic they have no longer fluctuates once they become ghosts.
Ghosts remain in their typically own realm called Limbo, which is a barren and desolate wasteland and warzone. Ghosts can move freely throughout different worlds, but normally do not do so. Many eventually lose aspiration, and become nothing more than hollow shells.
How much a Demon looks like to their past life as well as remember from it is seemingly a wild card, though there is a connection between what experiences the sorcerer goes through before death and how they end up as a demon. Those who share similar fates around the same time will often share how much they resemble their previous life and how much they recall. How much their body is destroyed before death, how much magic they had, and how long they have lived also plays a factor.
If a sorcerer runs too low on magic, their body will begin to turn to dust. This process is called Magic Deficiency. While the process is slow, it can be very painful and fatal if not treated.
Magic Deficiency does not usually happen among sorcerers. It is most common among those who go prolonged periods of time without contact with other sentient beings or constantly expelling more magic than they gain.
Although it is more uncommon, it is also possible for sorcerers to experience magic deficiency during times of illness. There are even certain diseases that are only among sorcerers, and a common symptom they share has the same effect.
Keep in mind that magic deficiency is impossible for ghosts due to that they do not have a body and that their magic no longer fluctuates.
When a sorcerer gains enough magic, the magic will collapse on itself and causes a phenomenon called Supernova. The sorcerer gains a seemingly endless supply of magic to such an extreme where they gain god-like powers. These sorcerers are considered as Immortals.
However, this phenomenon is so rare that many sorcerers deny that Supernova exists. Many other sorcerers have attempted to Supernova their entire life only to never achieve it, and those who have claimed to become Immortal have either disappeared from earth to serve a greater purpose, or have decided on their own time to pass away, whether if it was with their powers or not.
Also keep in mind that ghosts can not supernova for the same reasons ghosts can not go through magic deficiency.
Lesson Three: Channeling Magic
Channeling Magic comes in all ways, shapes, and forms. We will go over the most common types of channeling magic, but it is important to remember there are many, many other ways to channel magic and it is very common to use a combination of all sorts of methods. Each method is called a technique.
That being said, in order to channel magic, one must have a source of magic, and in order to have a source of magic, the magic must be stored. Each technique is how one draws the magic and puts it in use.
Not every technique works for every sorcerer, and not every sorcerer has access to every technique either. Luckily, what technique a sorcerer chooses will come very naturally to them, even if they do not master it right away. Every sorcerer can execute any technique, but it is proven to be much more difficult and exhausting to execute, how difficult depends on how similar it is to the preferred technique.
Each technique falls under two categories depending on where magic is stored: Internal Channeling and External Channeling.
-The source of their magic is stored within the body of the sorcerer. With this kind of channeling, magic is always accessible, however, the magic is more unstable and fluctuates much more due to this.
Some examples of Internal Channeling are:
Gesticulation - The use of physical movement to channel magic. Commonly used for combat, but can easily serve other purposes. The more energy put into the movement, the more magic is used. Can tire one out though.
Emotion - The use of raw emotion to channel magic. The simplest and easiest of channeling to do, but the hardest to master. Can be very unpredictable and dangerous if not cautious, and requires constant focus.
Incantation - The use of a series of words to channel magic. Requires lots of memorization and patience. Best for assisting purposes as opposed to combat, and is commonly used for everyday magic.
Caduceus - The use of an item, such as a wand, to channel magic. This technique often gets confused as External Channeling, however, the item has no magic of its own and all comes from its user. The user can still channel magic if they do not have the item, but have difficulty channeling without it.
-The source of their magic is stored outside the body of the sorcerer. With this kind of channeling, magic is more stable and reliable, however, the magic may not be always accessible, which may render one defenseless.
Some examples of External Channeling are:
Location - The channeling of magic from a location. The safest way to store magic, especially in large quantities. The location must be built to channel magic, and are usually used to serve a single purpose. The sorcerer must also be in close proximity of the place to use it.
Ornament - The channeling of magic from wearable goods, such as jewelry. A fairly common method of External Channeling more often used by wealthy sorcerers. It is also used within family traditions among sorcerers as well. However, due to its value, are typically stolen and sold on black markets. Tends to look very similar to Internal Channeling.
Potions/Charms - The channeling of magic from items with established purposes. Both of these items only have a limited use before considered useless. Luckily, it is very easy for those who use this technique to create new ones. In fact, most typically have multiple potions/charms stockpiled.
Relics - The channeling of magic from and through items. Unlike Caduceus channeling, the relics are the source of the magic, and the sorcerer will be rendered defenseless without their relic. Relics can range from spell books to wands.
Lesson Four: Types of Magic
Each sorcerer has one out of the two types of magic. Unlike channeling, a sorcerer can not switch between the types of magic, nor can they decide which type of magic they use. The type of magic that one uses determines how their magic will interact with the world around it. Theoretically, a sorcerer could have the ability to control both types of magic. However, this has never happened, as one would need an absolutely perfect balance between the two, or otherwise one would cause the other magic to expel rapidly, causing magic deficiency at a rapid rate. The closest sorcerers have actually gotten to controlling both types of magic is when they supernova. Because of the massive amount of energy they get, it does not matter what magic they have at that point.
These types of magic are Dark Magic and Light Magic.
- The ability to create and manipulate what does not exist in the world.
Dark magic is associated with illusions. Dark magic can take form of what exists in the world and can interact with it, but can not directly manipulate it like light magic can. Because of this, the line between what dark magic can do and what it can not due is often blurred.
- The ability to create and manipulate what already exists in the world.
Light magic manipulates matter, but it does not actually create it. What it can create are reactions that already exist. Light magic is naturally stronger than dark magic, also. Despite this, controlling multiple types of matter takes a lot of practice, so most light magic sorcerers only stick with mastering one thing.
Possession of Sorcerers
If a ghost even attempts to posses a sorcerer of a different type of magic, the result will be catastrophic and fatal. Even if possession is successful, which stated before, is difficult to do, the body will die off in a matter of minutes. This even eats away at the ghost's magic, which they are incapable of gaining back.
Lesson Five: What are Figments?
Figments are tangible chunks of magic. While they're not normally much use to sorcerers, they are used for mortals to become halfborn sorcerers.
Figments are also formed naturally, but are very rare to find and hard to find and obtain. Sorcerers can use figments as a source of magic, but because of it's rarity and the amount of magic that usually contains in a figment is not very significant, most sorcerers ignore them. It is also important to note that the figments disappear once they are harnessed into magic.
Despite this, wealthy sorcerers will occasionally use figments in jewelry to show off their said wealth, since solid figments will normally take on a crystal-like form anyway. Note that when figments grow more dense, they lose their crystal-like quality.
Lesson Six: Mutual Terms
Mutual terms are agreements among a group sorcerers that will affect their magic and/or how it is used. These agreements can be among to groups as small as two people or as large as several nations. They also serve as treaties and deals among sorcerers as well from time to time.
Effects of Mutual Terms
Note that mutual terms still fall under the rules of magic, and can not be used to break them. Other than that, how the terms affect someone depends on the the actual agreement itself, and they do not necessarily affect those outside the agreement. Furthermore, there must be some effect on the magic of those who agree, at least those who have magic. If the terms require more magic than all sorcerers combined are capable of, it will not work. Mutual terms can also be used to give one's magic to another.
Usage of Mutual Terms
When Mutual Terms are between as little as two people, the agreements are typically things like deals, bets, buying, selling, and/or trade. Ornaments and relics can be exchanged this way. Mutual Terms can be broken. However, it can only be broken when majority of those who agreed to it also agree to break it. When it is only among two people, both must agree to break it. Demons can make Mutual Terms just as any sorcerer can. Mortals can make Mutual terms as well if it is with a sorcerer and/or demon. However, the most they can do is exchange services or items since magic doesn't apply much to either of them.
Okay, so this is how magic currently works for my characters and in my world. I have been working and revising this for quite a while now, so I thought it would be best to post this now. I'm currently working on things like their social aspects, history, and economy and whatnot, so I guess be on the lookout for that? Again, sorry for my absence, I've been busy. There may or may not be revisions to this later, I guess we'll have to see.