The Obligation System

A Terrible Magic System and How to Use It

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Licensed Use of the Obligation System

This document, detailing the Obligation magic system, is a reference for use in building derivative works such as novels, tabletop games, comics, and more. Per the CC BY-SA 4.0 (Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International) license under which this document is licensed, derivatives works are allowed—both non-commercially or commercially. Derivatives must use the same or compatible license. The original author (Madeleine Ethridge) must be credited. If a derivative document is used, the creator of the derivative must also be credited.

You reserve all rights to the content you create based upon this document and its derivatives. You are licensed the use of this document and its derivatives as a reference to build that content. Your characters are yours, even if they’re Nobles or Magicians, just as my characters remain mine.

Commercial derivative works featuring named characters from Galebound are not permitted, although characters may be referenced. If you intend to sell the work you’ve created, you can refer to my characters, but not pilot them. Exceptions will be detailed where necessary (such as in the case of [Spoilers Redacted]). Non-commercial works may feature named characters from Galebound, but you must credit the creator. If you would like to share your work with me, send it to [email protected]!

In Plain English

Fanworks using the Obligation System are welcome. You can even create your own commercial or non-commercial works using the Obligation system detailed in this document. Ideas cannot be copyrighted. This document, as a written and published work, is copyrighted under a Creative Commons license, meaning you can share and build upon this document as long as you credit this document as a source. Galebound, its sequels, and side stories are still copyrighted and I, the author, reserve all rights to those works.

The Obligation System

The Obligation is the magic system of the world of Dusk, the setting of the fantasy/drama novel and webcomic Galebound. The magic system is an integral piece of the plot of Galebound, as conflicts the system creates are the primary cause of strife for its major characters. However, the magic system does not need the plot nor the characters of Galebound to function and can be used in creating other stories—which was first proven with Hok’s comic series "The Adventures of Rock Magician", and later with Jo Michelle’s novella Voiceless, both of which used the magic system to spin an entirely original story. This document is meant to serve as a comprehensive guide to the magic system so you may use it for your own story.

Although I am always excited for new readers, it should not be obligatory for your own readers to read Galebound to understand this magic system, nor should you require readers to read this document to enjoy your work. Galebound’s story, by virtue of its main character’s ignorance and its deuteragonist’s unwillingness to explain, introduces readers to the truths, intricacies, and horrors of the system gradually. You do not need to do the same, but I do recommend explaining the basic premise of system to your readers at some point. The information given could be something as simple as "Noblemen can give Magicians commands that cannot be disobeyed, and only those commands can grant Magicians the use of magic." The rest of the implications—and loopholes—of the system logically stem from those two rules, and your readers or players will pick up on them as they’re presented.

To follow my own recommendation, if you have not read the comic or novel from which this magic system originates and want a summary my short summary is as follows:

Within the world of Dusk, magic is a manipulation of spirit, whether the spirit be that of a human or of nature. Humans known as Nobles and Magicians harness this power in different ways: Nobles have the power to command Magicians, Magicians have the power to command Daemons, and Daemons influence Nobles. This system is called the Obligation due to the magically-enforced compulsion to follow given commands. Commands are enforced by the Gale, a planetary storm which carries commands from issuer to recipient and binds them to completion.

Due to events taking place within the main plot of Galebound, [Spoilers Redacted].

The Setting

The Obligation System works best with the world upon which it was born, although it's not required. The Gale is the enforcer of the magic system, but the Gale itself only exists by the grace of complex atmospheric conditions.

Dusk is the world of this magic system. It is an Earth-like planet in many aspects—it is habitable, has an oxygen-rich atmosphere, and a supply of liquid water. It has animals and plants we Earthlings would be familiar with, and it has humans.

What it doesn’t have is night, or seasons, or a lot of room to live comfortably.

Dusk is tidally-locked. A tidally-locked planet rotates at the same rate as its orbit around its host star so one side always faces the sun. This leaves one hemisphere of the planet in perpetual sunlight, and the other in perpetual night. In the narrow space between—approximately eight-hundred kilometers wide—is the Dusk, the twilit band existing within the planet’s solar terminator. It has a mild, pleasant climate fit for human life, but it is narrow. The total area of the Dusk is approximately 6% of Earth’s surface area. Further reduced by the presence of water, Dusk’s dry land totals 9,287,000 square kilometers (about 6% of the dry land on Earth). Although small, it is within this space that your story will unfold if you have any mercy for your characters.

Tidally-locked planets with atmospheres tend to have an enormous storm system centered at the substellar point, where the sun is fixed directly overhead and global hadley cells converge. Quite like a hurricane, the sun-baked air and ocean rises into a storm. In this world, that storm is the Gale, its eye in the wind-blasted furnace known as the Valley of Glass. The Galelands are fatally hot, akin to a sandblaster, and otherwise entirely inhospitable to life.

To the west of the Dusk, opposite the Galelands, is the hemisphere of permanent night known as the Shadowlands. The Shadowlands are locked in ice and darkness and, like the Galelands, will kill a human who ventures too far.

In short, the Dusk is where you want to be.

The Dusk wraps around the entire planet, including the equator and magnetic poles. In this band exists a myriad of different cultures and peoples. Galebound focused on the area around the city-states of Evenheim and Cymaria, but other settings exist within this band. The only limiting factor is that the population is human—the Dusk does not have elves, dwarves, halflings, or other fantasy races, nor does it have alien visitors...yet.

The world does have one unique and non-human sentient race: daemons. Daemons are the spirits of elements of nature, such as water, ground, plants, lightning, and fire. The Gale itself is a daemon, albeit a unique one. These creatures are removed from humanity, but coexist in this world—with varying degrees of harmony.

Time

The last consideration to keep in mind when writing in this world is the dark hour. Although the world does not have a natural night, there is one hour of darkness every twenty-seven hours caused by the transit of the second planet in their star system, Foncé. Foncé is a much bigger planet and its antumbra shades the entire Dusk once a day. This hour of darkness, called the dark hour, marks a new day, and it is the span of time around which they base the rest of the hours in a day.

The twenty-seven hours are divided into three groups: the dark hour and eight hours of light in the morning, nine hours of light in the midday, and nine hours of light in the evening. Most inhabitants of Dusk sleep through the morning due to the dark hour triggering melatonin production.

There are no seasons. Additionally, with no actual moon, what we would call months are instead called cycles. The duration of a cycle is twenty-seven days, which was codified by Saint Agnes in 346 AV (based upon a cycle many women are all too familiar with), and a year has nine months (also based upon a common span of time women are familiar with). A week is nine days: Undin, Secundin, Tredin, Quardrin, Cinqdin, Sistin, Septin, Octin, and Nondin. The months follow a similar naming scheme: Unmen, Secunmen, Tremen, Quarmen, Cinqmen, Sismen, Sepmen, Ocmen, and Nonmen.

Galebound takes place in 1120 AV (Anno Ventus), but your story may take place in any era. Be sure to remember that [Spoilers Redacted].

Currency

The most common currency in the Dusk is simply gold, silver, and copper. One gold piece is more-or-less equal to $35; one silver piece, $3.50; one copper piece, $0.35. Larger volumes of money are mostly held as local promissory notes.

Religion

Religion, in general, may be used as needed in your worldbuilding. However, some things have been canonized. For example, non-inheriting Noble children are regularly trained as priests due to their ability to communicate with daemons (and are often left in the care of abbeys or shrines). Additionally, the city of Vespas is known to be a major religious city complete with a theocracy based around the Obligation—although much of its hierarchy was dismantled after the assassination of several key figures in 1114AV.

Further Worldbuilding

What this guide does not provide is a list of other cities, races, cultures, religions, governments, or etc. The Dusk, while small, has miles of land which has not been explored in canon; the area which did feature in canon is roughly the size of Utah. Given this mostly-blank state, you may build settings as you like.

Tabletop games resources have a lot of material to help build cities. If you get stuck, they may be a good place to look for inspiration!

The Second Gale

Prior to the year 0 AV, the Gale was just another daemon similar to other natural wild daemons, with wind as its domain. At the moment marking the start of the Agnesian calendar, the original Gale stopped and the Second Gale took its place.

[Spoilers Redacted].

Because of its ties to the presence of air, a rule of thumb is that the Obligation only works when there’s no danger of suffocation. This is not entirely accurate, because magic will work if even a single toe is in contact with air connected to the Gale. However, those fully submersed in water and trapped in airtight rooms are not bound by the Obligation.

When cut off from the Gale:

  • A Magician’s eye rings fade.
  • Obligations that bound the Magician go dormant until the Magician is in contact with air again.
  • Daemons’ influence over Nobles is broken.
  • Magicians cannot command Daemons if the Daemon is cut off from air.
    • Magic cannot manipulate water underneath the surface. The surface can be manipulated with an effect that can extend underwater as long as the effect can hold without the presence of magic.

With this effect in mind, you may give your characters a break from the Obligation system by throwing them in an airtight room. You will need to consider their supply of oxygen.

Nobles

Noblemen (or Nobles, the more gender-neutral term [Spoilers Redacted]) are descendants of Éduin Aster of Cymaria. Not all Nobles are rulers, and not all rulers are Nobles, but with the advantages granted to them due to their ability to communicate with city daemons and to command Magicians, many Nobles naturally find a place as leaders within their home cities.

In the cycle of Obligation, Nobles can command Magicians and Daemons influence Nobles. A Magician must obey any commands given to them by a Noble. Additionally, a Magician can only use magic if it is in accordance with a Noble's command. Daemons can influence the minds and hearts of Nobles, usually through visions or by provoking intense feelings. While not as compulsory as a command from a Noble to a Magician, Nobles inherently possess an intense sense of empathy towards daemons, which makes them well-attuned to the state of the natural world.

Unfortunately, Noble’s empathetic connection to nature was not always present. In the year 438 AV, a mass enchantment intended to remove Nobles’ ability to command instead broke the connection between Nobles and daemons. This resulted in the 34-year-long global war called the War of the Blind Kings which ended in 488 AV. Subsequent generations have progressively restored the empathetic connection lost to that generation of Nobles.

All Nobles are descendants of Éduin Aster, the First King of Cymaria, and all of Éduin’s descendants are Nobles. After the inception of the Second Gale and the creation of the Obligation system, Nobles took on the role of restricting the use of magic to prevent its abuse.

Magicians

Magicians are those who can use magic within the system of Obligation. While some Exempt (those who cannot use magic) are aware that magic exists and that it can be used to control daemons, most have never knowingly encountered an actual Magician and information about them is mostly found in stories. In recent years, they have faded into legend and some doubt they could even use magic, preferring to attribute the feats Magicians claim in stories to exaggeration, natural phenomenon, or pure luck. Several kingdoms, however, are known to employ servants known as Court Magicians, a vestige of earlier times.

A notable trait of Magicians is the color of their magic. When casting magic, whether it be conjuration or enchantment, the Magician exhibits a glowing aura; the color of this aura differs with every Magician and is generally representative of who that Magician is—as it should, for the glow is the Magician’s soul made visible. This color is also present in a thin band around a Magician's pupils.

All Magicians are descendants of the first Magician, Alain Duvent, and all of Alain’s descendants are Magicians without exception. Due to his [Spoilers Redacted], Alain was able to command daemons in ways similar to what would later come to be known as conjuration. In the years leading up to the cessation of the original Gale, Alain [Spoilers Redacted]. Shortly after, the Second Gale formed and set in place the system of Obligation, which binds Magicians to follow the orders and commands of the descendants of the King Éduin and prevents them from commanding daemons without an Obligation.

Daemons

When referring to daemons, the word ‘daemon’ is capitalized when referring to Daemons as a part of the cycle of Obligation and ‘daemon’ without capitalization refers to the race of spirits.

Due to their status as amalgamate beings, it’s common for sentient daemons to refer to themselves as ‘we’. Wild daemons are also typically agender, genderfluid, and/or nonbinary.

Wild Daemons

Wild daemons are nature spirits that inhabit certain elements of nature. Most commonly, they are spirits of organic, changing, or living elements of nature (e.g. water, plants, fire, wind, lightning, animals, etc.). They only exist in things that are unprocessed. For example, a tree will have a corresponding wild daemon, but the daemon is dispelled when the tree is felled and made into lumber. Metal is almost always void of a daemon. Stone daemons are nearly impossible to dispel and often coexist with wrought daemons.

In contrast with wrought daemons, wild daemons are the thing they embody, whereas wrought daemons require a containing vessel.

In history, wild daemons were commonly worshiped by humans as minor deities. People would make offerings towards a daemon in exchange for the daemon's blessing. This practice has fallen out of favor in the last thousand years, although it is still practiced by some small naturalistic sects.

Before the daemonization of the Second Gale, [Spoilers Redacted].

Saints

Saints are influential people throughout history. They may be city founders, those who have stopped wars, those who changed the course of history through their works, or those who have shown exemplary human spirit. Due to their renown, saints are often prayed to for guidance in the fields relative to their works (for example, a mother may pray to Saint Esme for help with her children).

Through daemonification, the spirits of saints are still present in the world as a part of wild daemons. Most have pyreflowers or pyretrees, which usually become the focal point of shrines.

Examples of saints:

  • Esme, patron saint of motherhood. Something of a folk saint, Esme was known for being the mother to all, regardless of blood relation.
  • Owain, patron saint of fallen combatants. A Magician who—in manipulation of his orders—ignited a battlefield to clear the bodies of the fallen and ensured their souls were not trapped within rotting corpses.
  • Martyn, patron saint of justice, a Vespan prince who executed his father for crimes of war in 488 AV, officially ending the War of the Blind Kings.
  • Ophelia, Saint of Truth
  • Yulia, Saint of Peace and Serenity
  • Mallovin, a Scholar, wrote on the Cycle and the place of Magicians and Noblemen
  • Émilien, Saint of Commerce
  • Aeryn, Saint of Patience
  • Evangeline Renaud, Founder of Evenheim
  • Éduin Aster, Founder of Cymaria
  • Arcein, Saint of Rebellion
Wrought Daemons

Wrought daemons are human souls, either whole or fragmented. In contrast with wild daemons, they require a vessel to inhabit (e.g. a human body). Enchantment is moving a fragment of a human soul into an item, either actively or passively. Passive enchanting happens simply by interacting with or living within an object/structure that can contain a wrought daemon.

City Daemons

City daemons are wrought daemons that inhabit cities. They are formed by fragments of soul left by anyone who has lived within the city for a sufficient amount of time. Any given human dwelling will eventually form a daemon, but city daemons are unique for their relative size and presence; city daemons alone of all wrought daemons are able to make themselves heard to humans and possess a type of aggregate sentience similar to wild daemons.

City daemons are particularly useful to Nobles who were born within the city (and therefore have an inherent connection to the daemon) as the daemon can warn the Noble of impending danger or of trouble within the city.

Under certain conditions, a Noble has special privileges with their city’s daemon:

  • They must be a descendant of one of the city's founders.
  • They must be considered the rightful ruler of the city.
  • They must have been born within the city.

This connection to the city daemon is usually passed on to the firstborn of the king (regardless of gender), although it can be passed to a close relative if need be. Upon the current ruler's death, the privilege passes to their blood heir or chosen heir. The privilege grants the Noble preferential treatment from the city's daemon. In the event of an attack on the monarchy from another Nobles, even one descended from the founder and born within the city, the city daemon will side with the rightful ruler.

On occasion, a city daemon forms with no suitable candidate to receive its blessing (for instance, if the founder of the city has no living descendants). Under this circumstance, a Noble who is not a descendant of the founder may make themselves the ruler of the city and foster the connection with the city daemon despite their ancestry. However, the Nobleman must be considered the rightful ruler of the city by the majority of its living residents in order to gain the daemon's favor.

Hybrids

The child of a Magician is a Magician, and the child of a Noble is a Noble; this is without exception. Therefore, it’s reasonable to assume that the child of a Magician and a Noble would be both. That assumption is accurate, but the hybridization of magic results in some unique effects.

  • A hybrid can command Magicians (including themself), and be commanded by Nobles (including themself).
  • A hybrid can command Daemons, and be influenced by Daemons.

In short, a hybrid gets all the good and all the bad of the system. Because of this, hybrids are rare if not entirely unheard of under the Second Gale. Nobles consider hybrids to be a liability due to their commandability, and Magicians—understandably—balk at the idea of sexual relations with a Noble.

As discussed under Magic, willingness to obey a command is an important factor in the strength of the resulting magic. Therefore, a hybrid would be more powerful than most Magicians when fulfilling a self-given command, as any command they give themself would, presumably, be one they are more than willing to fulfill.

See also: [Spoilers Redacted].

Magic

Magic is a supernatural ability to manipulate forces within the world against their preferred or natural state. Within the world of Dusk, magic comes in three major flavors: conjuration (fireball throwing, etc.), enchantment (the implantation of wrought daemons within objects to imbue the object with certain effects or properties), and law (the binding of one’s self). It could also be considered a manipulation of spirit, either those inhabiting nature (i.e. daemons) or one's own soul. The magical system under the Second Gale is called the Obligation due to its compulsory properties.

Under the Second Gale, all magic is locked behind a Noble’s command. A Magician can only use magic when commanded, but the strength of the magic also has varying factors. Magic is weaker or stronger depending on the specificity of the command, the Magician’s willingness to comply, the daemon’s willingness to comply in the case of conjuration, and the Magician’s skill.

Thaumic Energy

In a para-scientific sense, magic functions by acting upon thaumic energy, which is theorized to be a specific and unique type of acoustic radiation originating from Dusk's star. Thaumic particles reach the Dusk primarily at the subsolar point, where they are scattered and evenly distributed across the majority of the world by the Gale. Thaumic energy disperses quickly in the absence of movement, relying on the winds of the Gale to constantly feed energy into the thaumic particles to remain functional--thus, magic can be entirely disabled by sealing a room against the wind and allowing the air within to perfectly still. Thaumic particles also cannot penetrate water without immediately dispersing all available thaumic energy.

Commands
Summary
  • Nobles can vocally and audibly command Magicians.
  • Commands are issued either by intent (the Noble wants a Magician to do something) or by contextual language (any clearly imperative sentence).
  • Once the Magician who received the command understands how to complete the task they were assigned, they are Obligated to complete it.
  • Magicians must obey any command given to them by a Nobleman, as the Magician understands the commands.
    • If the Magician does not understand the command (e.g. if it was given in a language the Magician doesn't understand), the command is held by the Gale until the Magician understands how to accomplish it.
    • Obligations without a known solution are dormant until a solution is possible.
  • Magicians are compelled to complete or enact their Obligations.
  • Two or more mutually-exclusive Obligations result in a conflict in which neither command can be obeyed.
  • Conflicting commands destroy the soul of a Magician.
  • If a Nobleman dies, their Obligations are passed to their oldest living child.
    • If the Nobleman has no child, the Magicians are released from their Obligations.
    • If the Nobleman dies and then comes back (i.e. their heart stops temporarily), their Obligations return as normal.
  • In the event of ambiguity, the Gale (in other words, the writer) determines what is an Obligation, who it was issued to, and how it would be completed.

The "command" is an acoustic form of magic unique to Nobles. It is purely verbal and must be heard and understood by a Magician to take effect.

When given a command by a Noble, a Magician must obey the command as they understand it (with the understanding varying depending on the clarity of the command and the Magician who receives it). For example, the vague command "bring me [person's] head" could be taken as the connotative "kill them and bring their detached head as proof" or the more literal "bring the head; optionally the live body may still be attached".

As the command must be heard and understood, commands given in writing have no effect, and commands given in a language not understood by the Magician do not take hold immediately. However, as long as the command was verbal, it will still exists within the Gale; therefore, if the Magician learned the language of the command fluently enough to understand the command they were given, it would take hold immediately. For example, a Magician given the command "faire le déjeuner" would only be Obligated starting from the moment they learn the words "faire" and "déjeuner", and then would proceed to make lunch.

Once a command is given and understood, a Magician must immediately seek a method to complete the command. If a path to completing the command is discovered, it becomes an Obligation and must be completed according to the decided path. Once the Obligation is set, the path to completion cannot be changed unless external factors change the circumstances sufficiently, forcing the Magician to find a new path to completion. To violate the chosen path without significant change in external factors is, in itself, a violation of the command.

True violation of the command is rendered an impossibility within the instincts of a Magician, similar to the instincts one feels against walking through walls or unaided flight. Truly impossible commands may be given with little adverse effect, only a persistent nagging feeling on the part of the Magician. However, should an impossible command become possible, it immediately sets as an Obligation. Two commands that are independently possible but mutually exclusive are conflicting commands and have adverse effects upon the recipient Magician.

Conflicts

A "conflict" in the context of the Obligation is a combination of two or more mutually-exclusive Obligations that share a timeframe. For example, if a Noble captured a Magician of a rival court and commanded that Magician to kill their own liege, assuming the Magician is bound by liegeoath, that Magician would succumb to a conflicting set of commands: "do no harm" and "harm". Unless one of the commands is rescinded, a conflicting command will result in the death of the Magician as the Magician’s soul is torn asunder by the competing commands. The time until death varies, but in general the closer a Magician is to completing one of the commands in the conflict, the faster they succumb to the effects as the other Obligation pulls them into not completing that command.

Violating a command is not the same as a conflict. If a Magician is made to violate a command while unconscious or by accident, there is no consequence. If the command is made impossible by the accidental violation, it falls off as if an external factor rendered it impossible. If the command is still possible to follow despite the violation, the Magician is compelled to continue following the command as soon as they are able.

Conflicting commands create a loophole in which the Magician can violate a command, because violating one is to obey the other.

Law
Summary
  • Law magic allows a Magician to manipulate their own body and mind to comply with a command.
  • Law magic can be used to heal oneself, erase memories, sever nerves, or even halt aging.

Law magic is magic over one's self. It can be used to manipulate a Magician's own mind, body, and soul in various but usually subtle ways. For instance, a Magician might be commanded to change their eye color; the magic of law would make this possible, although there are limits (e.g. a Magician cannot be commanded to turn into a different species and attempts to do so would be fatal. Magicians also cannot heal others, only themselves). The compulsion to follow commands is also a variant of law magic.

Liegeoaths are a common type of Law Obligation specific to the relationship between a Court Magician and a Noble. The command given is usually as follows, although some variants exist: "Do me and my household no harm, nor allow us to come to harm." This command ensures that the Magician is bound to protect the liege, their family, and any other members of the Noble's court. Once given, the Magician is considered a Court Magician and the Noble their liege.

Conjuration
Summary
  • The classic fireball-slinging magic of fantasy canon.
  • Conjuration can be used to command, control, or influence plants, animals, and other natural elements.
  • Some daemons are too powerful to command without a perfect alignment of intent.

Conjuration is a type of magic that involves commanding wild daemons. Within conjuration, wild daemons can be made to act in ways their basic nature—and sometimes physics—don't normally act, such as controlling the movement of water, fire, plants, etc. Conjuration can be used as a weapon, but it also has many beneficial uses such as supporting a farmer's crop yield, managing animal herds, or altering terrain.

Like Magicians given a Noble's command, daemons of nature are compelled to follow a Magician's command. In contrast, however, a Magician's commands over a daemon are purely based on intent and motion. Some daemons are too powerful to command normally—for example, world-spanning daemons such as the Shadow or Gale.

Much like many wrought daemons, wild daemons are usually amalgamate souls made of the daemonized wrought daemons. When commanding a wild daemon, only a fraction of souls that comprise it are actually affected.

Enchantment
Summary
  • Enchantment is the process of moving a portion of one’s own soul into an item as a wrought daemon.
  • Only items without a wild daemon may be used as the container for a soul.
  • Some enchantments are naturally created by the gradual process of souls transferring into an item.
  • A Magician can only manipulate their own soul.

Enchantment is a form of magic which manipulates wrought daemons i.e. fragments of human soul. By intentionally imbuing an item with a wrought daemon, a Magician can grant certain useful effects to that item. Many enchantments borrow inspiration and attributes from wild daemons. For example, an enchanted shawl might borrow a fire daemon's warmth, or a bird's weightlessness. Conversely, some enchantments are built to be antagonistic to wild daemons, such as a garb enchanted to repel water.

Not all enchantments are intentionally made, and they do not require a Magician to create (although a Magician can speed the process of creating one tremendously, and a Magician's guidance is required to imbue an enchantment with a specific effect). Wrought daemons such as city and castle daemons arise naturally over time as humans shed tiny portions of their souls in the places they inhabit. Over time, these shed souls amalgamate into a single legion sentience (e.g. city daemons).

Magicians can only manipulate their own souls. If an item contains fragments of soul from two or more Magicians, typically the Magician who offered more of their soul gains control of the item, but the effect may be suppressed by the intentions of the other occupant souls. As a result, massive amalgamate wrought daemons such as city daemons and castle daemons cannot be controlled by a single Magician since it would be impossible for them to enchant away enough soul to control the entity.

It is possible for a Magician to enchant away their entire soul. By doing so, the body will fall comatose and eventually die. Because no other Magician would be able to transfer the soul back into the owner’s body, a full soul enchantment is typically a death sentence. It is possible, however, for a Magician to enchant their own soul into another person’s body, but this is typically ineffective since the predominant soul will maintain control in most cases.

Arcein's Ignorance

Arcein's Ignorance is an enchantment invented by the Magician Arcein in her research regarding nullifying the Obligation, originally created in approximately 439 AV.

The enchantment acts as a proxy between those who give and receive commands by taking Obligations upon itself. As with impossible Obligations, the enchantment does not cancel or void an Obligation, but renders most Obligations dormant (for what commands could an inanimate object possibly fulfill?). However, the burden of the Obligations wears on the enchantment and it cannot sustain its protection indefinitely; conflicting commands in particular hasten the enchantment’s demise and the soul which fuels the amulet will eventually fade.

The Ignorance enchantment does not block commands which it can fulfill as an enchantment. For example, it does not negate a Magician’s ability to add more soul to the enchantment, nor does it restrict the Magician from taking their soul back. Destruction of the item holding the enchantment via magic is also possible.

Effect on a Magician Bearer

If a Noble gives the command "go to Cymaria" to a Magician wearing the amulet, the Magician will not need to obey; the amulet itself is Obligated to go to Cymaria, but as an amulet it can't actually take the necessary action to complete the command by itself. However, because the one giving the command was not the one wearing the amulet, the command still exists upon the Gale with that Magician as the intended Obligated person. Therefore, if the Magician removes the amulet while the command is still unrescinded, the Obligation will take hold upon the Magician immediately. If the Magician is already obligated and afterwards receives the amulet's protection, their Obligations are immediately transferred to the amulet until the amulet is removed. In some cases, putting on the amulet can be considered a violation of the Obligation, making it impossible for Magicians to knowingly use the amulet in those circumstances.

While wearing the amulet, Magicians cannot command daemons because the intent does not reach the Gale.

Effect on a Noble Bearer

Daemons are incapable of influencing any Noble wearing the amulet. This can be beneficial in the case of daemons hostile to the Noble, but detrimental otherwise. For example, it would prevent a Noble from hearing their city's city daemon or any other daemons warning them of impending danger.

When wearing the amulet, a Noble's commands will not encode on the Gale, meaning they do not become Obligations. As the magic within the command doesn't reach the Gale, even if the Noble removes the amulet, the commands given while wearing the amulet do not have an effect on any Magician.

Effect on a Daemon Bearer

Much like humans under the Obligation, daemons affected by the amulet cannot command nor be commanded. Their influence upon Noble is nullified, and commands given to them by Magicians can be ignored.

Armory Stones

Armory stones are pieces of stone chipped from the walls or floor of a castle room. Through passive enchantment, castles contain daemons similar to city daemons, but without the sentience or power of a city daemon. Through the enchantment, Magicians can use the connection between the armory stone and the room to transport items out of the room to their current location, regardless of their proximity to the castle. Castle daemons are typically loyal to the household living within the castle, meaning use of an armory stone is typically restricted to those serving or allied to the household.

The distance and size of the items transported depends on the casting Magician's own magical strength as well as the strength of the castle daemon. Increasing the size of the armory stone increases the distance and size of the object that may pass through it, although with diminishing returns.

Daemonization
Summary
  • Wrought daemons are souls with a container; Wild daemons are raw souls unbound by a container.
  • Destruction of a wrought daemon’s container converts the wrought daemon into a wild daemon.

The human soul is a wrought daemon. Wrought daemons are one or more human souls acting as a unit. Wild daemons may be converted or incorporated into wrought daemons; for example, a stone may be hewn into a building block of a city, making that stone daemon part of the city daemon. Conversely, wrought daemons become wild when their container is no longer capable of supporting them. Converting a wrought daemon into a wild daemon is formally called daemonization.

Pyreflowers are an example of human daemonization and a common funeral rite within Dusk. By combining funeral pyre ashes with seeds of a plant, the deceased’s soul becomes part of the plant's daemon. The destruction of the body through fire releases the soul so it may become a wild daemon. Similarly, an enchanted object may be destroyed to release the fragment of soul contained within, converting the soul into a wild daemon. Souls released in such a manner tend to incorporate themselves into an existing and nearby wild daemon, or may take on a form of raw energy if no wild daemons are available.

Daemonized souls carry with them the thoughts and feelings of the deceased. In most cases, those emotions are diluted by the other souls making up the daemon, but a high concentration of souls with similar feelings may warp the daemon that incorporates them. For example, sites of massacres may become haunted by the released souls of the victims.

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