Concept Spotlight: Magic Sources

Spotlights are a weekly (at least) post about a character, location, or concept from Poas (or adjacent realms). They offer a deep single-glance view that may other wise be spread across the pages.

The ley lines of Poas are conduits for dispersing mana across the realm. These lines, naked to the eye and running below the surface, criss-cross the continent and form what is known as the ley network. The central ley line of the ley network of Poas is the Gran Marc, running north to south, from Castle Dracon to Terswood. All ley lines that connect, by some degree of separation, to the Gran Marc are part of the ley network of Poas.

There are three known means of accessing the ley energy, also called mana, within the ley lines. Archmages are able to pull mana from the ley lines directly, svarters and the fey passively absorb and store mana, and crystal mages are able to use the power held in mined mana crystal to power their spells. As you might imagine, each method is not without its strengths and weaknesses.

Archmages are rare among the humans, with most of them born in Dracon. Their power may be nearly limitless when near a ley line or ley nexus but there are places in Poas too far from a ley line, leaving an archmage without their magic. It is exceptionally rare but possible to draw mana from a ley line too quickly and shatter it, likely leaving the area without a source of mana for an archmage.

The svarters and fey hold a reserve of mana internally, so they are never without their magic, but it can run out if they use too much too quickly and it will take time to restore. With training, the amount of magic a svarters can store and the speed of their recovery can improve but few dedicate themselves to that.

About one in six of the population of Poas is trained in at least some basic magic using mana crystal but few have the resources to actually be considered a crystal mage. Dracon controls the export of mana crystal across the continent and it is not cheap enough for the average citizen to squander it on minor tricks. A true crystal mage is rare and are usually from wealthy families.

In Realms of Terswood, there are characters with each type of mana. Archmages: Cazlandt, Searcy, Lilan, Daelin, Lone, Jazelyn, Kiol. Svarters: Teiris, Etoh. Crystal mages: Miech. This may give the impression that archmages are far more regular than they truly are but five of the seven listed are descendants of Cazlandt, who is considered the archmage and possibly the first archmage in existence.

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Published by jsamland

Author Jamie M. Samland is an avid reader of sci-fi and fantasy. He lives in Michigan with his husband and their cats.

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