I hate my job.~Evander Hunter
Hi, my name is Evander, and I’ll be your guide to learning everything there is to know about guild mages and the Magical Community as a whole. First things first, they’re all certified nut jobs. That’s right. Nut. Jobs. If you don’t believe me, try to have a conversation with Jeph and see how long it takes you to want to bash your brains in. No, no. I insist. I’ll wait.
How did it go? Yeah, that’s what I thought.
So back to guild mages. Let me break it down for you. In Washington State, we have three major guilds competing for dominance.
Why? I dunno. I don’t make the rules; I just follow them.
I kinda like being alive.
So first up, we’ve got my guild, the Cardinal Sun. We’re considered the cream of the crop or whatever. I think we’re a bunch of power-hungry asshats, but that’s just me. No, I’m not power-hungry. I actually got into this mess by some seriously messed up circumstances.
What? You want me to tell you about that?
Fine, but I’m giving you the short version; we’ve got a lot of ground to cover if I’m going to get you caught up on the ins and outs of magic.
Once upon a time, there was a little prince. He had the perfect mother and the most amazing father. Then he got an evil step-brother courtesy of adoption. Well, long story short, the step-brother pretended to be a saint and the whole family fell for it. But that’s beside the point. One day, the mother fell at the hands of an evil witch. A year later, the father died at the hands of rival guild mages. The evil step-brother, six years the prince’s elder, took him in and raised him like his very own—then tricked him into joining the guild.
Membership is for life.
So, back to guild mages.
In addition to the Cardinal Sun, there are the Sterling Moon and the Bronze Eclipse. All three are responsible for their own region of Washington, but it doesn’t stop them from stepping in on each other’s turfs—especially when it involves the Sibyl. She’s caused a lot of trouble for everyone over the last five years—but more on her later. She may incite trouble at the guilds, but she has nothing to do with the ins and outs of policy.
In general, the concept of guild mages is to have a police force within the Magical Community. What’s the Magical Community? It’s the name for the society of magical people at large. It’s kinda like saying, “the human race,” but only referring to the magical people of the human race. Magical humans—A.K.A. Spellcasters, or Casters, for short—are everywhere. No matter where you go, you will find someone who has magic, whether that be your average witch or mage (magical citizens, more or less), your guild mages or coven witches (your police force and practitioners of magic), or those who would do others harm (Casters deemed “rogues”).
It’s rogues whom the guilds are meant to police.
Because it was deemed that Norms—the non-magical humans of the world—absolutely cannot know about magic for fear of them starting a war with us (or starting up witch hunts again), we guild mages are meant to hunt and detain—and in some cases, execute—the rogue Casters who break guild laws.
Guild laws are fairly simple and straightforward:
- Don’t use your magic to harm anyone—mage, witch, or otherwise.
- Don’t expose your magic to Norms.
- No illegal magic (anything that harms others or is sinister in nature; i.e. hex and curse magic).
That’s basically it. So long as you’re not hurting someone or imposing on other’s rights, then you’re fine. The issue is, so many people don’t follow these rules. I dunno why not, but some people just think they are above the law. Or they are trying to make a profit. Or some other reason. But they always believe their misdeeds will go unnoticed. But they don’t. We always find out.
Now, not all mages are made the same, and not all guild mages are the same rank. Let’s start with mages and magic.
What’s A Mage?
A mage is typically male in gender, but it’s not unheard of to meet female mages—just like it’s not unheard of to meet male witches. The difference is the power they wield. For example, mages use their magic externally. They can lob magical energy blasts and often use their magic to learn offensive and defensive spells.
We’re essentially one-trick ponies, specializing in one type of magic and occasionally learning a secondary type of magic. This doesn’t happen too often, considering if one doesn’t have the magical ability or the aptitude for the magic, it can’t be learned. There are sometimes mages who specialize and have elemental magic, however.
What’s An Elemental?
Elemental magic is both common and rare. No one is born with elemental magic; it’s gifted to them by the gods—or so people say. I believe it though, but there’s a reason for that.
I, myself, have elemental air magic.
The memory is distant and hazy, but when I was a boy, a voice spoke to me. I don’t know who or what it was, but it spouted some nonsense to me and then I suddenly had the ability to feel the air. And I’m not talking like feeling a breeze on my skin. I mean I could sense it. I could tell when it was happy or sad, when it was ready to rage and storm or be calm and docile. When I finally came into my magic at age thirteen, I could control the air.
Anyways, since we suck at life—I mean, lack diversity in magic—mages supplement their shortcomings with spells, charms, and incantations.
What’s A Witch?
A witch is someone who uses magic internally. Often, witches use prayer magic to conduct spells and rituals. Any magic they give out, they cycle back into themselves by the end of their praying or ritual. They use conduits to channel their magic, such as prayer candles or specific crystals and stones. They use moon and sun magic and even the equinox and solstice to strengthen their spells and magic. Their magic is typically used for peace, luck, protection, healing, and other calm and friendly things.
Witches are amazing people in general, but I’ve met a few hex and curse witches in my time. They take that same beautiful magic and distort it, summoning negligent and malignant spirits and dark magic to harm others. It’s a shame to see such divine magic used in such cruel ways.
“Jeph! You asshat!”
Excuse me guys, I’ve got a mage to go throttle.
“Get back here!”
Next: Guild Mages 101 – Pt 2