Magic
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Magic exists. It is a primordial energy, a force of nature that stands above its laws. It affects and changes the world and all that live on it. How magic came to be is unknown. Most civilizations accredit it to their various deities, but divine entities do not exist in Threa. They are merely figments of imagination in the heads of their believers.

Zizik means magic in Aezkian, the tongue of the aezkul, who are the people most educated in its ways. There are eight aspects of magic. When all of them are combined, the result is called alizizik in Aezkian. It is the whole of magic. However, most of the world's magic is split into the eight aspects because they are naturally inclined to diverge unless bond not to.

Magic can be manipulated to cause spectacular effects, but it is not limitless in what it can achieve. The laws, effects, and possibilities of magic are outlined in the following chapters and sections. Most of the information is unknown to the peoples of Threa. Even the wise aezkul do not know most of it. What each culture believes can be found in their respective teachings of magic and their religions.

This is likely for the better. Magic is extremely dangerous. Controlling it is hard and it only becomes more difficult the more magic one tries to handle at once. A large quantity of it in one place is inherently unstable and likely to end in a cataclysm. Magic affects the world around it with its sheer presence, and too many changes applied too rapidly can only end in chaos. Many civilizations had to realize this the hard way. They simply discovered too much about the fantastical power, became too greedy for it. Naught but ruins and artifacts remain of them. The arcane energies can even corrupt and devastate the mind, as explained in the section "Magic-Induced Insanity and Death".

Alizizik and Its Aspects

In Aezkian, the eight aspects of magic are called aezizik (air magic), azizik (water magic), hozizik (rock magic), izizik (ice magic), nokzizik (darkness magic), lizizik (light magic), and trezizik (nature magic). These names should not be taken too literally, because the aspects can affect and do far more than what their names suggest.

Alizizik is all eight aspects united, woven together like a cloth. It is the foundation of all animal life; it is creation itself and the essence of souls. A single creature could not possible control it, because they would have to master the eight aspects it is made of first – an unachievable feat. Not a single species on Threa is born with alizizik as its innate domain. Even the most powerful of storms cannot cause the creation of a being with an affinity for alizizik. The color of alizizik is pure white.

Alizizik can be used as a group effort. The involved mages' combined fields of expertise must cover all eight aspects in a masterful fashion and they must cooperate like the cogs in a clock for this to work out. The groups of casters who accomplish this amazing deed are rewarded with the ability to smith souls and shape flesh. Indeed, they are gifted with the very ability to create life using nothing more than the matter and energy at hand.

The arts of soul and flesh smithing are lost ones. None of Threa's peoples have a grasp on them. This is a boon, rather than a curse, for such power does not belong in anyone's hands. Having the power of creation can only lead to strife, chaos, and the spawn of horrors sooner or later.

Aezizik

Aezizik is the aspect of air and lightning. It is the very essence of the storm, always in motion, free and wild, and difficult to tame. It can carry its users to new heights of power as easily as it can blast their minds apart with its sheer vastness. The color of aezizik is aqua.

Aezizik users can sense and control all gases, not only the common gaseous mix called “air”. They can accelerate gases to incredible speeds and make them flow as they desire. Lightning can be felt by them, too, and it listens to their commands as well, lets itself be redirect according to their will. They can even summon it from nothing. This takes considerable effort but is always available.

Aezizik has become an innate part of a few species. Most of these are fliers or gliders. They use this element to make the wind carry them where they desire or locally calm storms so they can fly right through them. Aezkul are a prime example. The strong mages among them are capable of performing feats of flight deemed unnatural because they would be impossible without the ability to control the very air around one's wings.

Azizik

Azizik controls water and water-based liquids, such as wine, blood, and milk. Azizik is a versatile and bipolar aspect. Just like the sea, it can be calm and comforting or wild and devastating. It can be so rough that it throw the souls of those who try to tame it around until they shatter like driftwood smashed against a rocky shore.

Beings in tune with azizik can sense water and command it to do their bidding, even if it means breaking the laws of physics. They can make it assume various shapes, defy gravity, or even make it change its state. Indeed, powerful users of azizik can make water freeze, liquefy or vaporize, no matter the temperature. This is a draining task because the water desires to assume its natural state for the given conditions. Once the caster loses their magical grip on it, the water returns to said state. Azizik cannot be used to create water, only to shape it, move it, or alter its state.

Some aquatic creatures use azizik instinctively to form a bubble of water around them that flows with them or to just make the water part right before touching their body. Both acts aim to reduce the animal's resistance in the water to a minimum. Coastal and river azkul also use azizik to make waves crash onto land in the hopes of flushing food into the sea. Azizik mages can execute more precise strikes, too, for example by whipping foes with watery tendrils or cutting them with liquid blades. Less hostile uses for azizik exist as well, such as steering ships.

Blazizik

Blazizik is heat. It is the most ruthless and destructive element, driven by nothing but anger and greed. Like a wildfire, it desires to consume all in its path. Nothing but ash and soot is left in its wake. Those who use blazizik best be prepared to leash it because unleashed it will create a raging inferno that consumes even those who tried to control it. Rightly funneled, it can be like a hearth – warming and welcoming. The color of blazizik is orange.

Almost all deeds that can be accomplished by exploiting blazizik are of a destructive nature. It permits its disciples to summon flames from nothing and control them and to heat objects with a mere thought, even from a distance. There is nothing defensive or creative about it. At most blazizik can transform matter by applying heat. Also, blazizik users can sense heat, but in an unusual way. They can feel the temperature in a place outside and away of their body, if they focus on it. While blazizik can be used to channel heat from one place to another, it cannot be used to cool anything beneath ambient temperature. Heat can only be channeled from matter of higher temperature to matter of lower temperature because a blazizik user cannot magically perceive a conglomeration of heat if it has ambient temperature; it lacks contrast to its surroundings.

Given its harmful nature, creatures who are naturally connected to blazizik are somewhat rare. They tend to be capable of breathing fire, heat themselves as a means of defense, or they use it melt a path through ice. A great example of powerful blazizik users are the blazkul. They instinctively use it to regulate the heat of their natural, fuel-based fire breath and powerful members of this species can use it consciously to bring fiery death and ruin to their enemies, for example by sending forth walls of flame or by making fire rain from the skies.

Hozizik

Hozizik does not merely flow through Threa's crust; it affects it. It is the least volatile of all aspects, being stable, reliable, confident like the bedrock of the world. Yet it is not harmless, not even to its user. It can be a crushing burden on one's mind. The color of hozizik is amber.

Hozizik senses, alters, and manipulates all inorganic matter of the earth, like sand, gravel, dirt, rock, and even metal. The matter in question need not be solid; lava will heed the commands of a hozizik mage. Capable hozizik mages can shatter, meld, split, and shape matter. What hozizik cannot do is create or erase matter. It can only manipulate what is already there. If matter is to be moved, there either needs to be space where it can go to or the matter has to be compressed and thus made denser. Compressing matter is a formidable task and can change the properties of the matter in question completely. It is also possible to reduce the density of matter, but that is an equally formidable task.

Most species that include hozizik in their domain tend to live underground. They heavily benefit from the ability to shape and shatter rock. Hozkul are responsible for much of Threa's underground tunnel networks. They touch a mountain's flank and, with a mere thought, break the once solid stone into various chunks that they can dig out with their massive paws. Hozizik tends to make the creatures it affects resilient, strong, and heavily armored.

Izizik

Izizik is cold. Physically, cold is merely the absence of heat. Izizik, however, is its own entity – pure lack of energy – with a will to consume and subjugate everything to be as desolate as it is. It is destruction, loss, and death. Left uncontrolled, it would drain the world of its magic, being its antithesis. Once separated from the other aspects, izizik will erase its supposed kin wherever it meets them without leaving a trace of their existence. Such desolation causes isolation, and izizik seeks the company of itself as much as it despises that of its siblings. It has a tendency to conglomerate. Controlling izizik is difficult and very risky. If one's grasp on it slips, it might extinguish one's own soul from one moment to the next. Izizik has no color. No matter how massive the concentration of it, it does not generate light.

Those who do manage to control it can accomplish two things. Firstly, they can draw the heat out of anything, usually freezing the target in question. As long as they are strong enough, they can use izizik to freeze the very air around them if they so desire. Secondly, they can dispel magic. Other mages will struggle to accomplish anything in the presence of a master of izizik. The strongest individuals can even diminish and erase souls, if the soul is not within its original, organic vessel or the bond between vessel and soul has somehow been weakened. It is important to note that users of izizik are not better at drawing energy out of anyone or anything than users of the other aspects are. Izizik does not consume or transfer, it merely erases.

Izizik is the aspect that is most rarely a natural part of a species's domain because it is anti-heat and anti-magic, basically anti-life. Despite that, izizik has managed to influence a few species's evolution and to become a natural aspect of theirs. These beasts tend to be natural magic hunters. They use their affinity for izizik to instinctively erase magical dangers, such as elementals, magic storms, or magic wells, or simply use it to freeze water to aid them in hunting or getting around. Izizik creatures are also often very social, a side effect of their deathly yet gregarious element. Perhaps they seek to combat the iciness of their souls with the warmth of their kin.

Lizizik

Lizizik is light. While illumination is in its nature, so is deception. It controls light and thus what one sees, making it a master of illusions – a trick of the eye, made into an aspect. Those that control lizizik have to learn to be certain of what they perceive, else they may grow paranoid or delusional. The natural color of lizizik is yellow.

This aspect can be used to sense, bend, alter, and create light. It cannot be used to lessen the amount of light present. Bending and altering light allows for various applications. One could become invisible by bending light around one's self or at least blur one's shape by altering the light reflected by one's own body. Combine the ability to bend and alter with the ability to create light and conjuring illusions becomes a possibility. It also allows the capable mage to deal damage. Focused light burns hot, even hotter than a common flame, and it is far more accurate, too. It consumes grand amounts of energy to channel it in such a focused way. Additionally, whenever a lizizik user creates a powerful beam of light, they also, involuntarily, send some light magic forth alongside this ray. This lizizik in turn creates unfocused light, which radiates from the original, focused beam. While this does not lessen the beam in any way, it still being just as focused, the light radiating from it does make it visible to spectators. Only the most expert sorcerers can prevent this effect to conceal their beams. Hitting surfaces or being scattered by aerosols still affects them naturally.

Rarely is lizizik a part of a species's innate domain. This is because it only very rarely appears in the world. Its natural users usually apply it to mask their presence, or to scare off or distract predators, or lure prey. Only a tiny amount of species can use it to shoot radiant beams.

Nokzizik

Nokzizik is the most alien of the aspects, being not merely the absence of light but its exact opposite – darkness incarnate. It appears in two states – radiated and materialized – and erases light in either, but allows shape-shifting, object-conjuring, and transmutation only with the latter. It is strange and adaptable, making it mysterious and sneaky. This fuels distrust toward it, and this is well earned because it gladly betrays its adepts. Uncontrolled nokzizik may rob the light before it reaches their eyes in a crucial moment, impale them from the inside with a million needles that vanish a blink later, or transform their limbs into “ink” and make them disappear. The color of nokzizik is purple when it shines from magical containers or the eyes of an elemental, but otherwise it is black.

The radiated state of nokzizik works basically like an anti-form of light. It “shines” from its source and dims the surroundings instead of illuminating them. The materialized form does not allow any light to pass through or reflect off of it. It is perfectly black and opaque. “Materialized” is to be taken literally; the magic takes a physical, solid form. It is either liquid or solid in this state. Materializing nokzizik and keeping it materialized requires a constant influx of energy. The energy requirement grows exponentially the more solid, denser, and harder the magic user makes it. This is why material nokzizik usually appears like a viscous fluid. The viscosity is misleading; it can flow extremely fast if willed to. Owing to its high energy requirement, solid nokzizik is usually just above the line of becoming liquid, so easy to push around and cut through by physical means. Weakened nokzizik elementals have been described as “dripping” like they are made out of thick ink. Either way, materialized nokzizik feels perfectly smooth, has a coefficient of friction similar to glass (unless its surface is purposefully made rougher), and produces no heat of its own and rapidly adapts the temperature of whatever it touches. Therefore its temperature usually equals the ambient one. Interestingly, being cold or hot has no effect on it. It cannot burn or otherwise chemically react, and liquid nokzizik will not harden merely because it is cold. The magical matter utterly defies nature's laws.

Since nokzizik erases light when it freely radiates across a space, its purple glow is only observed when large amounts of nokzizik are stored in a magic vessel or in the glowing eyes of nokzizik elementals.

Mages of nokzizik can sense nokzizik in all its forms, but they cannot sense materialized nokzizik that is under the firm control of another being. When using the aspect of darkness themselves, they are capable of extinguishing light, draining color out of matter, hiding the presence of magic, and of creating and controlling materialized nokzizik. Erasing light is the easiest task. The caster merely has to radiate nokzizik across a space and the present light will be dimmed. Draining color is a most curious feat. What the mage does in this case is alter the matter at hand so that it no longer reflects light or only certain wavelengths of it. The process cannot be reversed by applying nokzizik. It can only be used to make matter absorb more light; it cannot make it more transparent or more reflective. Its ability to hide the presence of magic makes nokzizik one of the sneakiest aspects. Skilled users can shroud their souls or their spells in a veil of nokzizik and thus hide their presence from those sensitive to magic. Nokzizik that is not being used to mask magic can be sensed by those sensitive to it. Last but not least is the ability to create and control materialized nokzizik. This makes nokzizik extremely versatile. All manner of things can be created this way, such as walls, claws, shields, spikes shooting from the ground, and so on and so forth. The range of possibilities is limited merely by the imagination of the mage and the fact that materialized nokzizik always requires a direct physical connection to a source of magic in order to exist. Once separated from its source, material nokzizik vanishes in moments.

The most powerful of casters can even turn their own body into materialized nokzizik. This is a daunting and dangerous task because, if one fails to properly revert the process, they might lose parts of their body and could die as a result. Various benefits are attached to this so called “nokzizik form”. It allows greater mobility as one can turn into a puddle of inky fluid that can dart around at rapid speeds. The movement is observable with normal eye sight; it is not fast enough to avoid that. The nokzizik fluid can also cling to any surface if the mage invests enough effort into it. The smoother and steeper the surface and the bigger the amount of inky fluid, the more difficult it is. As a consequence, clinging to ceilings is nearly impossible for large forms. Another benefit of the nokzizik state is that it is harder to damage. Thanks to its solid-to-fluid nature, it is easy to dodge attacks and even strikes that hit can only cause damage if they manage to separate a chunk of the material nokzizik from the core of the body. In general, it allows the caster to be formless and thus assume any shape they desire, but a form that differs a lot from one's natural body can be impossibly hard to manipulate. It is easier to control a shape that is close to one's actual body, a shape that one's soul is used to. For the duration of the nokzizik form, one's soul is stored within a magical force field located within the nokzizik body. It returns to its original container once the normal, fleshy figure is assumed again.

Nokzizik is an aspect that species only rarely have an innate affinity for because it overall is a rather rare aspect. Nokzizik species tend to use it to instinctively hide their presence from beings sensitive to magic or they use it to more easily hide by dimming or fully extinguishing any light nearby. Very few beings are capable of using it to materialize nokzizik and manipulate it.

Trezizik

Trezizik is nature. It tends to and controls the soulless side of life – flora and funga. It is the most compatible with alizizik as a whole, embodying healing, growth, and life, though it is still only an aspect of the living. One should not mistake it for a necessity, for it is merely a boon. The grand majority of plants live and even thrive just fine without a hint of trezizik having ever affected them. Drawing upon this aspect feels like directing a gentle touch that makes the world greener wherever it lands. Those aware of its capabilities rightfully fear it. It can cause madness to take root and quickly overgrow one's consciousness, flood it with invasive ambitions that drain one's soul and body. The color of trezizik is green.

Users of trezizik cannot wither plants or make them perish, but they can sense them, hasten their growth, nurture them using nothing but trezizik, and even make them obey their commands. Vines will entangle their opponents and roots will trip them when a trezizik mage wills them to. Trezizik can also be use to heal the wounds of animals. Normally, the passive protection a soul grants its vessel against magical influences of all kinds would even prevent healing. However, the patient can allow a healer to affect their body magically; they can drop their soul's guard willingly. This makes the patient extremely vulnerable towards the healer, so they must quite literally trust them with their life or else their soul will reject the healing touch. The art of feeding trezizik into a body to quicken its healing or even allow it to regenerate lost parts is rather difficult to learn and strains the healer immensely. That is why it is not a commonly practiced art. It is also important to remember that trezizik can only heal living tissue. Corpses are unaffected by it.

Unsurprisingly, trezizik is among the aspects that species most commonly have a natural affinity for. It is as life-affine as it gets and rather commonly appears. Many species have received its evolution-altering touch. They use it to rapidly heal while resting, to make the local flora snatch their prey for them, or to weave their nests out plants without having to kill or even touch them.

Veins, Surges, Storms, and Wells

Magic originates from the very core of the planet. From there, it rises to the surface as continuous streams of alizizik. These are commonly called magic veins simply because they are within the ground. These veins seek a way to the surface, seemingly without a pattern. Their paths are like that of a wild river, which had to wind its way through a hilly countryside.

On their way through the world's core layers and its crust, the alizizik veins are fractured into multiple veins that purely consist of one aspect each. This process begins deep within the surface, deeper than any have ever dug, and is comparable to a light beam being split into the various wavelengths and thus colors it is made of when it hits a prism.

Veins vary wildly in power and in lifespan. The grand majority are weak and short-lived. The more powerful and/or long-lived a vein is, the more rare it is. However, potent veins that are also long-lived are far from impossible. There are veins that have lasted dozens of generations of Threa's most long-lived peoples and will last many, many more, despite being extremely rich in magic.

A vein ends wherever it reaches an edge between solid and fluid matter, so for example on the surface, within underground cavities, or on the bottom of a body of water. A vein is diffused at its endpoint. Its energy is no longer a focused stream, but instead radiates across the local space, affecting it and whatever lives in it. How heavily affected a given space is depends on how powerful and numerous the veins ending in it are. Weak veins, even in large amounts, have little effect. They can be considered magical background noise, the basic level of magic that permeates most of Threa. There are regions with barely any to no magic, but they are rare just like areas with a lot of magic are.

Magic that radiated across a space or has otherwise been used does not just vanish or end up in outer space and thus out of reach of anyone. Used magic is naturally attracted back to the core of the planet. It seeps through the ground, bleeds back into the source and then rejoins the magic veins as usable energy. In other words, magic is part of a cycle similar to the water cycle.

Extremely powerful, short lived veins cause a magical surge at their endpoint. They suddenly and drastically affect the area. If surges of different aspects happen in close proximity to each other, they can cause a hybrid surge. Generally, surges are seldom events which have massive consequences, positive and/or negative.

If multiple strong surges happen in close proximity to each other, the amount of localized magical energy is so large that it cannot dissipate fast enough. A magical storm happens. Various aspects of magic mingle into one massive, world changing storm. This event is extremely rare. Storms can cause the eradication of a civilization as well as the creation of an entire island or even continent. It all depends on how powerful they are, which in turn depends on the surges or rather veins that caused their creation. A storm's appearance and properties are determined by the aspects it consists of.

Long-lived veins create magical wells at their endpoints. The more powerful a vein is, the more powerful is its well. The effects of a weak well are not noticeable, but those who are sensitive to magic can feel its presence. Weak wells do have long-term effects, such as influencing the evolution of a species, especially if multiple of them exist near each other. Powerful wells drastically affect their surroundings just like surges do, but their effects remain for as long as the well exists. This leads to the creation of locations that are heavily affected by magic and look accordingly. Even those who cannot sense magic will easily see that it must be present. The difference between weak and powerful wells is very large. Wells are either powerful enough to tremendously affect their surroundings or too weak to affect them noticeably at all. It is in the wild nature of magic that there is no in-between. When long-lived, strong veins of different aspects create wells in very close proximity to each other, they can end up creating a hybrid well.

Where which aspect is most likely to form a well varies, and is elaborated on below.

Wells of aezizik are almost always found on high altitudes, such as mountain ranges. Aezizik wells cause strong winds to blow nearby, sometimes circularly around the well. They also make lightning hit the area more commonly or summon their own and shoot it in random directions. Combined, this, over extended periods of time, alters the surroundings. The lightning burns away vegetation; the wind erodes and thus reshapes rock. Ancient aezizik wells are often barren but feature alien and smooth rock formations.

The grand majority of azizik wells are located deep in the ocean, far out of reach of any civilization. The few that exist on the surface are usually found at or close to sea level, especially in regions that are very wet. Common locations are lakes, swamps, oases, and so on. Azizik wells can form even in regions without any bodies of water, but those regions usually do not remain dry for long, because the wells naturally attract water. Short-term, the wells concentrate moisture in the nearby air, draw it from further away, until the air is supersaturated and water begins to condense on nearby surfaces. Puddles form, then pools, then ponds. If a well exists long enough, it can cause the creation of an oasis in the middle of a desert. Long-term, some wells have managed to alter the flow of nearby rivers even. The water, in an attempt to get ever closer to the well, erodes one river shore more than the other, until it breaches through and can naturally flow towards the well. This process naturally requires decades, even centuries.

Blazizik wells are equally common at all altitudes and usually exist in places that are already hot, like volcanoes or hot springs. Weak wells merely warm the area around them, which can lead to the creation of aforementioned hot springs, miniature tropical forests, or miniature deserts. Powerful wells cause fires to randomly pop up, melt rock into lava lakes and streams, and might even create a volcano of their own. Blazizik is certainly to blame for some of the world’s geological hotspots.

Wells of hozizik are most commonly found in underground caverns deep beneath the surface. Their surroundings can look strange and unnatural because the freely radiating hozizik alters the nearby rock, shapes it, melds it, splits it, and even changes its properties. Often crystals, even magical ones, and gems grow nearby hozizik wells.

A well of izizik is easy to spot, if it is located in a usually warm environment. It freezes everything around it. The wells are not powerful enough to lower the local ambient temperature enough to freeze the air. The temperatures near an izizik well usually vary from just beneath zero to near arctic ones. Users of other aspects will quickly realize another dreadful fact about these areas – they are nearly or fully devoid of any other magical element. Izizik wells are rare but they can appear anywhere. The likelihood of finding one increases the closer one searches to the planet's poles.

Lizizik wells can appear anywhere, but they are very scarce. They cause mirages to appear nearby. To religious fanatics or those of bad mental health, these illusions can appear like an object or entity they are familiar with, such as a deity or an item they desire. Lizizik wells do not alter their surroundings in any other way.

By reason of their light erasing properties, nokzizik wells are easy to spot during the day. They often appear as odd spaces of dim light in the middle of an otherwise brightly lit area. Everything nearby seems to be various shades of gray, as if the space around was drained of color. The wells are extremely rare but can occur anywhere in the world.

Wells of trezizik, depending on the region, are either very easy or difficult to spot. They appear most commonly in areas where life already thrives. These wells are hard to spot. Finding a denser spot of forest within an already dense forest is like finding a specific bit of hay in a hay stack. The more rare wells, those that appear in barren, hostile regions, are the most easily noticed. They can be an oasis within the desert or an oddly thick patch of brush in a tundra. Trezizik is capable of nurturing plants even if water and nutrients are lacking, allowing their growth despite otherwise inhospitable circumstances.

A rare form of trezizik well are healing springs. They can occur when a trezizik well and a body of water, usually a small one, are in the same place. The trezizik radiating from the well can infuse the water with natural healing properties, if it is exposed to the magic long enough. Consuming the water or bathing in it will help cure wounds and ensure a healthy, strong growth for children. Healing spring water is therefore often used as a base for healing potions.

Sensing and Using Magic

It is possible to sense and use magic. A creature has to be born with this ability, but not all species can be born with this ability. More information can be found in the section “Superior and Inferior Magical Creatures”.

Sensing Magic

Magic is primarily sensed passively, but a creature can actively focus on it to extend the range at which they can feel it. One’s passive magic sense does not require effort, but neither can one turn it off. The sensation is always there, always a light burden on the mind, which becomes stronger with each aspect one can feel. Actively searching does require effort. It puts a slight amount of mental and physical strain on the seeker; hence, it is commonly done while meditating to reduce the effort required and to increase one’s focus. To those who can sense it, magic does not appear like colorful lines, exotic sounds, or similar impressions that can be registered with the usual five senses. Magic is like an intrinsic feeling. A sixth sense. One feels, knows that there is magic nearby and can tell how much of it there is. Only if magic is concentrated somewhere in large enough amounts, for example within a magic crystal, does it cause a glow that can be seen with ordinary eyes. The color of the light depends on the aspect(s) stored in the magic vessel.

Apart from whether the searcher is actively or passively trying to sense magic, there are only two other factors that are significant: proximity and concentration. It does not matter if there is a thick wall between the seeker and the magic, as long as the magic is in close enough proximity, the seeker will feel its presence. The higher the concentration of the magic, the easier it is to sense and to single out from the ambient magic, and it can therefore be sensed from further away, too.

With the ability to sense and use a given aspect also comes the ability to sense the matter that obeys it (or the energy that does, henceforth included in the term "matter"). You can only sense matter that you can control. For example, one needs to be able to sense as well as use azizik in order to sense water. If the matter is protected in a way that prevents its manipulation by a magic user, most likely through some sort of protective spell or bond, or because it is already being controlled by another, much more powerful mage, then it cannot be sensed. In other words: A mage can only sense matter that in this very moment would obey their will. Additionally, compared to sensing magic, sensing matter is more difficult, takes more effort, the range tends to be shorter, and most can only sense matter when actively focusing on it.

Using Magic

Using magic is an active act. It requires willpower, focus, and magic to be available in sufficient amounts. Willpower and the ability to remain focused can only be learned; they are critical aspects of mage training. How much magic is available depends on various factors. Using magic also puts mental and physical strain on the user. An exhausted sorcerer cannot cast a spell, no matter how much magic there is nearby. Generally, the act of using magic can be split into three phases: gathering, shaping, expelling. The length of these phases depends on how large the magic effect is to be and how good the magic user is. It can range from requiring mere seconds for all three to multiple hours per phase.

During the gathering phase, the mage has to obtain and contain the magic required for their spell. It can be drawn from the environment, from vessels, from one's internal reservoirs, or a combination thereof. The more magic the caster in question can handle at once, the more powerful effects they can create. Going over their limit will lead to complications, ranging from failed spells to death. Magic should also only be held onto for a short span of time because it is otherwise very taxing and can cause madness and anxiety. Temporary psychosis is a likely side effect of handling too much magic at once or for too long. These complications might make the zizik slip from the mage’s grasp at an unfortunate moment, causing havoc. Utilization of magical implements and vessels to anchor the spell and its energy mitigate this, enabling lengthy magical rituals. Concentrated as it is, the magic being collected by the caster becomes visible as glowing streams that flow towards them, either from everywhere or from whichever vessel they draw, and they make the space around them shimmer with the colors of the azizik aspects mustered. These phenomena increase in intensity as the magic charge grows. Also, due to imperfections in the spellcaster's hold on their gathered zizik, it leaks out and radiates across the local space, affecting the environment as any wild zizik does.

The following phase is all about shaping the congregated energy so it can be expelled as the desired effect. The more magic one manipulates at once, the more intense the focus and effort required is. Being disturbed during this phase can have unforeseen consequences. Half-finished spells are better gently released than suddenly unleashed. The aforementioned glowing streams and magical shimmer around the mage are shaped and further concentrated in this phase. Some casters gather them in their hands, weave them around their limbs, or draw runes into the air. This varies depending on the teaching of magic – the belief behind the zizik – the caster adheres to. It is naturally just a will grounding and focus sharpening formality; the actual creation of the spell happens purely within their minds. Also, the shackles on the gathered zizik further slacken, intensifying the environmental effects of the spellcasting.

Once the caster and spell are ready, the former has to expel the latter. This is not a relief but another effortful task. The mage has to keep a firm grip on the magic, let it flow forth as desired and ensure it does not stray from the path laid out for it during the previous phase. If not properly controlled and constrained, a spell can abruptly end, do something unforeseen, or even compel the surrounding magic into causing effects itself, often chaotic ones. This chain reaction is more likely to happen the larger the amount of ambient magic is. Such a magic cascade is usually an accident. Imagine a sorcerer that merely wants to send forth a stream of flame, but a powerful, fiery explosion takes place right in their own hands instead because they are standing in the center of a blazizik well and are unable to keep their own zizik on its path. However, particularly skilled mages exploit the possibility of a chain reaction to cause tremendous effects with relatively small spells by purposefully letting them somewhat slip from their grasp, like throwing a match in a room full of combustible gas. Naturally, regardless of what tricks the magic user might employ, the constrains on their magic become most porous during the expelling phase. What was merely a leakage during the gathering and shaping phase can now almost be called a breach; the environmental changes around the caster peak.

The following text serves as an example of what the application of magic might look like. Its main actor is a blazizik spellcaster, a blazlin woman called Saskia, who follows the Blazkian teaching of the Inner Fire.

Saskia saw a horde of root risen approach her, stumbling and shuffling, but quickly nonetheless. Too many to put down with her hammer, but plenty enough to justify using her inner fire. To create a fire ball is a straining task; the blazlin took a deep breath.

What did father teach again? 'You must focus on your internal flame and nurture it.' She broadened the stance of her feet and opened her arms wide, closing her eyes and her mind alike. Her focus was sharpened to a point, aimed at the ambient blazizik flowing around her. Her arms tensed and fingers splayed apart. Orange lines formed in the air as the magic was commanded to converge around her. They curled around her arms, slithered up into her palms and balled up into orbs of increasing brightness.

To hold onto so much zizik without leakage is impossible; fires danced across her arms and the orbs in her hands ignited. The horde closed in and so did her hands come closer to each other, combining the gathered magic into one potent inferno between her scaled palms. The air around her could sear hairs at this point. It was time to unleash.

Saskia threw her hands forward with a mighty battle cry and released the pent up power. Her surroundings ignited or charred. The gleaming, burning orb turned into a mighty ball of fire, at its core still pure blazizik, which flew at the ranks of the root risen. It consumed the first abomination upon impact without slowing and passed through the middle of the shamblers. With a twist of her wrist and the forming of fists, the firey mage willed the remaining magic to create extreme heat at a tiny point, causing violent overpressure – the fire ball detonated and blasted her enemies into scorched pieces.

It is possible to manipulate multiple aspects of magic at the same time. This is hard because it is almost like trying to speak multiple languages in parallel and because the aspects naturally try to remain apart. Those who manage to combine them regardless, through sheer force of will and magical prowess, can cause a greater variety of effects and accomplish things that would otherwise be impossible.

Throughout history, many ways have been invented to make it easier to concentrate on spells – chants, phrases, rituals, ceremonies, and similar. The structure and routine these provide help; they guide the mage as they weave their spells. Religion also plays a big part. The fervor and willpower that can stem from zealous faith can make using magic easier. It is also possible for multiple mages to join forces and cast a spell together. This requires a lot of focus and the magic users must be attuned to each other. Again, this is where rituals and religion come into play. A shared belief offers a common ground, makes it easier to be in tune, and a ritual makes it easier for everyone involved to focus on the same part of the ongoing magic manipulation. Nowadays, the grand majority of magic users involve gestures, phrases, and rituals in their casting. They even believe it to be a mandatory part of spellcasting and would be handicapped when trying to do so without them. Only a gifted few can subtly, without a sound or motion, focus on the primordial powers enough to accomplish grand feats.

Creatures for that it is second nature to control magic can do so instinctively. This is what enables some beasts, despite being of low intellect, to use magic. Even sapient magical creatures can end up instinctively using magic. For instance, a powerful blazkul that is utterly consumed by wrath might burst into flames, or a terrified aezkul might summon a blast of wind to push the source of their fear away. This can be dangerous for the caster and/or their allies. The blazkul, if they lose control of their fire, might be consumed by it. The aezkul, too scared to think, might end up blowing their friends off a cliff or even blasting their own eardrums out.

The usage of magic has limited range. The further away from themself a mage tries to manipulate the world, the weaker their influence becomes and the more energy it takes. It also requires more focus. The magnitude of what they try to affect factors into this. Hozizik generally has a much shorter ranger than aezizik, for example. A hozkul might be able to magically pull a boulder, making it fly towards themself, from fifteen meters away or perhaps give a rock much farther away a magical nudge that makes it roll down a slope, but an aezkul is capable of manipulating the air multiple hundred meters away from themself, simply because the air is less dense than the rock. The benefit of rock and other solid matter is that it is a better conduit for magic than air. This means that the hozkul has an easier time nudging the aforementioned rock if they are in indirect contact with it through other solid substances of the earth, such as the ground. It is possible to improve one’s magic range by expending more energy or by involving other mages as assistance.

What can be achieved with each aspect of magic is explained in the chapter “Alizizik and Its Aspects”.

Superior and Inferior Magical Creatures

The grand majority of Threa’s species are naturally non-magical. Non-magical creatures are not able to use or even sense the magic around them. Among the creatures that are magical, the ability to sense and use magic varies in strength. This varies the most between species. Hence, Threa’s magical species are split into superior magical species and inferior magical species. There is a single exception – the wolshaks (more details on their page). Each magical species has an innate affinity for one or multiple aspects, their natural domain so to speak. Most species’ domains consist of just one element.

Superior magical species are the result of an evolution which has been enormously affected by magic. The energy has seeped into their bloodlines and their very flesh. It has become an innate part of them. Almost all members of a superior magical species are capable of sensing their aspect(s). Only extremely few members are born so magically inept that they cannot even feel that. Most are able to sense and manipulate their own domain. Superior magical creatures naturally can handle large quantities of magic when casting and even have the ability to store magic within their cells and thus their bodies, even within their very blood. These internal magic stores make it easier to cast under normal conditions and even allows them to cast in areas without ambient magic. Once the magic stores have been emptied, they need to be refilled. A creature's magic stores can only be refilled using aspects that are part of their domain. They refill them passively by resting in an area that is permeated by magic. The more magic there is, the quicker their reservoirs are filled. Magic wells of the right aspect are thus the easiest and quickest means to recharge. This is why magical beasts are instinctively drawn to them and have a tendency to create their dens and lairs right on top of them.

Inferior magical species, too, are the result of an evolution which has been affected by magic, but simply not nearly as drastically. Consequentially, their affinity for their domain is a lot weaker, they can naturally handle smaller amounts of magic, and they have no inner magic stores. Additionally, inferior magical creatures are only sometimes born with the ability to sense and manipulate magic. The chance of being born with this ability is increased if one's parents possess it and/or one was affected by a lot of magic while within the womb, egg, or whatever their species' equivalent is. However, even those that are born with the magical gift are often weak magic users. The birth of a mighty mage among inferior magical species is a rare event.

Both superior and inferior magical creatures can only sense and manipulate aspects they are sensitive to. A creature can be able to sense an aspect even if it cannot manipulate it, but it can only manipulate aspects that it can sense.

Dragons, called kul in the tongue of the aezkul, are a good example for superior magical creatures. Almost all kul are capable of sensing and manipulating magic. However, they are not all equally capable of doing so. Some kul are weak mages, while others are incredibly powerful ones. Most species of kul have an affinity for merely one aspect, but magical hybrids exist. A good example are the rizkul, who can manipulate both trezizik and nokzizik. However, they are not able to manipulate either aspect as well as an equally powerful pure representative of either.

Humanoids, like lin, are a good example of inferior magical creatures. Lin can be hatched with the ability to sense and even manipulate magic, but most lin are not. Magically weak lin might spend their entire life without realizing they have been magical to begin with. Magically mediocre lin may sense their own domain and manipulate it a little. Magically strong lin can cause basic effects within their own domain, sense the other aspects, and potentially even do little things with them. The magically strongest of lin can learn to heavily manipulate aspects of magic within and outside their domain.

Learning and Practicing Magic

It is possible to learn to sense aspects outside of one's innate domain. Both types of magical creatures can accomplish this. Only inferior magical creatures can also learn to manipulate aspects outside of their domain. Their weak affinity for their basic aspects makes this possible. Superior magical creatures cannot learn this, because their bond with their natural elements is simply too strong. They are so focused on their domain that reaching beyond it and grasping other aspects is simply inconceivable for them. Magically handicapped superior magical creatures, those born with an unusually weak connection to their domain, are an exception to this. Those who learn to sense elements not natural to their species must be cautious. Doing so can cause sensory overload if you are not cut out and prepared for it. This doubly applies when trying to learn to manipulate magic that is not of your domain. Using magic is simply a much more intense feeling than merely sensing it, so the potential for sensory overload and subsequent psychosis is larger.

Learning to sense a new aspect requires training and intensive meditation. Actually experiencing it for the first tome comes suddenly, unexpectedly. It is like having an incredible, unbelievable epiphany. It feels as if you have finally realized a universal, powerful, life-changing truth that has always been and is ridiculously obvious to boot, and yet you have remained ignorant to it until that very moment like some bumbling fool. The experience is breathtaking, makes the body quake, and can create immense self-doubt and ecstasy in equal measure. Even people of sturdy spirit have fainted from it.

Universally speaking, mastering one aspect is easier than learning multiple. It is nearly impossible for a user of multiple aspects to become as good at using one of them as someone who focuses on just that singular aspect. There is also a soft limit to how many aspects a creature can learn to sense and use because the more aspects one learns the higher the chance of insanity becomes. Learning all elements is thus impossible; it would cause suicidal madness. Learning just half of them is already a formidable task that is beyond all but a blessed few.

All magical beings can train to increase their power. However, their potential is determined at birth. Some are simply not meant to be as amazing magic users as others. Of course the innate ability of superior magical creatures is far greater than that of inferior ones. They merely need to grow up and can naturally manipulate their basic aspects. It universally requires more effort of inferior magical creatures to even be able to accomplish anything. It can require years of training, sometimes a lifetime.

Humanoids, no matter their potential, have to put a lot of effort into improving their special ability if they intend to achieve anything with it. Even after years of training a single humanoid will not be nearly as powerful as a single dragon, even one that is a magically weak. The fact that dragons live far longer and thus simply have more time to hone their magical gift makes matters tougher on the humanoids. Only in extremely rare cases a humanoid with the ability to perform grand feats of magic is put into this world. A surge or storm of magic is to blame for this usually.

What the various dragons, humanoids, and other creatures are capable of in regard to magic is detailed on their respective pages.

Magic-Induced Insanity and Death

It is stated many times over the course of this page that using magic can make the user crazy, even insane to the point of taking their own life. This section clarifies and emphasis just how hard the primal energies can weigh on the mind.

Magic is primarily sensed passively, and those sensitive to it always perceive it. It is a permanent sensation the mind and soul has to deal with. If it is just one aspect that you can feel, the impression is light and easy to stomach. You simply get used to it, just how one becomes accustomed to the constant feeling of clothing on the skin. Those of strong will can even take the permanent sensory pressure of two aspects without trouble. However, even the strong willed will realize that going beyond that is unhealthy for body and soul.

Sensory overload is the keyword. The magic sense, encumbered by having to deal with the permanent assault of various aspects, each whispering in a different language (figuratively), will seek to relief its burden by shifting it onto the other, ordinary senses. The result is seeing ghostly apparitions, smelling cake in a desert, hearing birds underwater, feeling sand under one's feet while lying in bed, and much more; in short, it leads to psychosis – imagining things that are not there. This issue starts of very faint and only becomes worse if one continues to learn more aspects.

A mage does not have to know multiple aspects to suffer from sensory overload and the resulting mental issues. Handling tremendous amounts of magic can cause the same. The chance is increased when the spell being cast includes multiple aspects. The aforementioned whispers turn into screams. At best, being overwhelmed by the gathered power leads to a temporary increase in hallucinations. At worst, it causes full fledged mental trauma that only becomes worse as one continues to abuse the primordial energies.

The possible trauma ranges from having a constant case of the “creepy-crawlies” all the way to seeing everyone around you as demons that you can only banish by slitting your wrists and offering them your very own blood, or perhaps by offering them the lives of nearby friends? The mind comes to strange conclusions when seeking refuge from the sensory torment it brought upon itself.

A common form of trauma or hallucination is imagining actual voices, which is why some casters wonder if the madness is caused by fragments of fallen souls trying to enter one’s mind. Many cultures refer to someone who is afflicted by magic-induced insanity as having “the Whispers”.

Magic Vessels

Superior magical creatures are not the only suitable storage for magic. Non-animal vessels for magic exist. These are magic crystals, magic bulbs, magical force fields and other, lesser known ones.

Magic vessels can be naturally charged by surges, nearby wells, or similar. It is also possible for a magic user to purposefully charge a magic vessel by actively directing a flow of magic into it. This allows one to purely fill a crystal with blazizik, for example.

Magic vessels cannot affect the world around them on their own, because they do not randomly release the magic contained within. They release it when made to or when they are damaged, for example by force or by overloading them. Being overloaded with magic makes them unstable and consequentially burst, violently releasing what energy was stored within. Depending on the amount of stored magic, this can cause a minor effect or a powerful magical surge.

Those sensitive to magic can feel the sheer presence of magic vessels, despite them not releasing any energy. Magic generally can be sensed without being directly “touched”. Those who are not sensitive to magic can at least see the natural glow that charged magic vessels give off.

How much magic a single vessel can contain depends on its size and on its condition. The less damage it has and the more cohesive, spherical volume it has, the more magic it can store. Crafty people use the stored energy to power magical devices or simply draw upon the magic when they need to, for instance to fuel a ritual or an alchemical process.

Magic crystals look like ordinary, white, clear crystals, except that they glow when a lot of magic is concentrated within them. The magic a crystal of high quality and the size of a honeydew melon can store is similar to that of a strong superior magical creature.

The crystals are located within Threa's crust. The likelihood of finding one depends on how strongly magic has been affecting a given chunk of crust over the course of its existence. A region that has seen many surges, storms, or where many wells are located is more likely to contain magical minerals.

Even if ground to dust, be it on purpose or through natural erosion, magical crystals can hold zizik. The energy density in a pile of dust is much lower than a cohesive crystal of the same mass, but the dust can be mixed into liquids. It is useful for alchemical products. Also, if water is heavily infused with magic crystals, it can function as a form magic container, allowing the storage of magic as a liquid.

Magic bulbs, sometimes called magic fruits or similar, are organic vessels for magic that are not the brain of an animal. They are grown by a few species of plants. Magic bulbs are not as good at storing magic as crystals are, but their advantage is that they can technically be farmed if one manages to cultivate one of the plant species that grows them. However, plants capable of storing magic tend to be dangerous and have a bit of a mind of their own. Another downside of magic bulbs is that they are organic. A bulb will begin rotting some time after having been cut off the plant that nurtured it. They are also not as damage-resistant as crystals. Once a bulb is cut or goes bad, the magic within just leaks out and disperses.

Magical force fields differ greatly from bulbs and crystals. They are not material, as the name implies, and they do not naturally occur. They have to be created by a magic user, either purposefully or instinctively. It is not terribly difficult to create a force field either, however, maintaining one requires focus, willpower, and large amounts of energy. The bigger the force field is, the more magic it can contain and the higher its magic upkeep becomes, too. Magical force fields usually draw upon the magic stored within them, but they can be set up so that they take from an external supply instead.

Because the sphere offers the most volume for the smallest surface area – less field per magic – it is the natural shape of magical force fields. Other shapes are less stable and more likely to break apart.

Physical or energetic objects passing through a magical force field will distort it, thus destabilizing it, meaning that magical force fields can be damaged through worldly means. A focused investment of zizik is required to stabilize the field again, else it will fall apart and the magic within is lost to the ether.

Lacking magic to fuel itself with will also lead to the collapse of a magical force field. The same happens if the caster focusing on keeping the field up loses their concentration. Thankfully, it is possible to enchant magical devices in a way that they “concentrate” on this task instead. Nevertheless, this does not remove the energy upkeep of the incorporeal vessel.

Another downside of magical vessel fields is that the density of the energy stored within is much lower than that of a crystal or even a bulb. Yet, since they can be created anywhere and even by beginner mages, they are still often used as central magic containers of rituals involving multiple casters if no crystals or bulbs are at hand. Also, because of the lower density of magic, the glow of a magical force field is very, very weak. It is practically not noticeable in well lit conditions.

Magical force fields do not have mass. They are moved around by unseen and weak magical forces that every aspect and thus every magic user is capable of generating and applying. Force fields can be made to hover close to the ground or even to fly. However, they do slowly drift back towards the ground. This is because all magic is naturally, if weakly, attracted to the source of magic, so the core of the planet, as explained at the start of this page.

Enchantments

Objects can be given magical effects. This process is called enchanting and works by weaving magic into an item. Only items that can store magic may be enchanted. The obvious solution are magical crystals on account of their storage capabilities and robustness. Lay a blazizik-charged crystal into a sword hilt and manipulate the magic within so that it will leak forth in a specific way at the utterance of a certain sound. That is how one may create a sword whose blade bursts into flames when a command word is spoken.

It is important to note that the enchantment is attached to the magic vessel and not the item. However, one cannot simply lay the aforementioned crystal into the hilt of a different sword. The enchantment has to be remade in this case. This may also apply when the original item has been heavily modified. That is why a broken magical blade will lose its effects, unless both the blade and its enchantment are repaired.

Only the laws of magic and the skills of the enchanter limit the possibilities of what can be created. What such a magical artisan is capable of depends on which aspects of magic they can control, how well they control them, and how good the vessels they use as “magic batteries” are.

The more massive the item or the more powerful the enchantment is, the larger is the amount of magic required. This makes it difficult to enchant huge objects. The energy necessary to keep them magical is so tremendous that whatever vessels are used will likely run out rather quickly, unless they are extraordinarily large and pristine.

Some of the fallen civilizations of old were grand artificers of magic. Working artifacts can still be found. Some no longer function, but many of these simply need to be recharged or require the skilled touch of an experienced enchanter and crafter. Enchanted items are highly sought after by many cultures and are often considered to bear religious importance.

Mutation

Magic affects spaces it radiates across and whatever lives in them. It has short-term and long-term effects. The aspects of magic can mutate a creature from one moment to the next or over a grand amount of time.

Sudden, drastic alterations to a creature's body are usually caused by a surge or storm. Most of the time, this causes the death of the creature in question. In rare cases, it can grand the creature new abilities. Imagine a scorpion is hit with a massive amount of blazizik. Its stinger might turn from a weapon capable of applying venom to one that instead shoots balls of flame by instinctively using blazizik. This is a rather extreme example, but it showcases well that survivable mutations tend to be based on existing anatomy and abilities rather than be a completely alien development.

Slow, continuous exposure of a species to magic alters it over a long period of time. The mutations are applied to each new generation, to the children as they grow in the womb or egg. As this is a gradual change, the mutation is easier to survive or at least does not kill the creature directly and certainly not as suddenly. If enough mutated specimen manage to reproduce and hand their mutation to their offspring, the mutation will become the norm for their species, or rather for the new species that has been created thus. Simply put, magic affects evolution.

Kul are a great example of creatures that have been heavily affected by magic over the course of their evolution. The exposure has, over time, given them the ability to sense and manipulate magic to a high degree and has given them various other traits that would not be possible without magic. Examples are the immense fire resistance of blazkul and the rock-hard armor and incredible strength of hozkul.

Souls

The soul is the immaterial essence of a living being, which includes one's identity, personality, and memories that is believed to be able to survive physical death. Every soul is made out of undivided magic – alizizik – and every living creature has one. This is true for non-magical, inferior magical, and superior magical creatures. A soul alone does not grand the ability to sense or use magic; it must be a gifted soul to do that.

Souls are not even mixtures of the eight elements of zizik. While every soul contains every aspect, each one is its own blend. Some souls contain more of one aspect than they do of another. This is not static; how big a share a certain aspect gets within a soul may change over time. However, there are clear tendencies. The largest fraction of a superior magical creature's essence is dominated by its innate aspect. While this is also true for inferior magical creatures, the difference is less stark. The blazizik portion of a blazkul's soul is overbearing and drowns out the others, but a trezlin's essence gives the other elements enough room to be understood, despite trezizik being its largest component.

Alizizik desires to fracture into its aspects and radiate across the local space. Consequently, souls are inherently unstable. They require a magic vessel to remain in one piece. A living body is such a vessel. Its brain, as long as it lives, can contain the soul. When the vessel is no longer able to contain the soul, then the soul disperses. Its energy scatters, joins the ether so to speak. This happens, for example, when someone's brain dies. There is no afterlife, even if many faiths believe in it.

However, a life after one's brain died is possible. A soul can be transferred to another vessel. One can transfer the souls of others or even one's own soul. The latter is orders of magnitude more difficult because the person attempting this feat has to prevent their own soul from scattering while also transferring it. Also, the vessel must be empty. Each vessel can only contain one soul. If two souls are forced into the same vessel, one will end up being extinguished and its energy will be added to the other, making it more powerful. Naturally, the weaker soul is usually the destroyed one, unless external forces intervene.

Magic crystals are the preferred non-brain vessels for souls because they do not have any form of upkeep and they cannot rot and are rather robust. Magic bulbs are more difficult to use; they rot after some time unless they are nurtured by a plant or forced to remain alive with trezizik. Keeping the bulb attached to the plant is not an option either, because these plants use the magic stored within their bulbs to feed themselves, so they would simply devour any souls stored within them over time. Magical force fields are thus preferred over bulbs when it comes to containing souls. Their downside is that they require a continuous stream of magic to remain intact. Usually, the other magic stored within the force field is used to maintain it. The issue with this is that, once the magic ran out, the force field collapses and the soul disperses. It is critical that a soul in a force field seeks out magical wells or other sources of magic to recharge its energy stores regularly.

If the soul within a vessel was a capable magic user before the transfer, it will remain one after. It can even still learn how to become a magic user, if it has been born with the gift. For example, a mage of hozizik, if powerful, could use nearby rocks to forge themself a new body. Naturally this expends the magic stored in the soul's vessel. The souls of non-magic users and even non-magical creatures can control a new body out of rock or another material with their soul as well, if said body has been appropriately enchanted. This allows the creation of golems.

Souls are usually created through reproduction. The act of fertilization, magically-speaking, is the act of combining two souls to create another. Each soul involved in the act removes a part of itself and those parts are then united to forge a new soul. Artificial creation of a soul is possible, but the art of soul crafting is an extremely difficult one. It requires a mage or circle of mages that is not only capable of manipulating all eight aspects of magic but also capable of uniting them into alizizik. The art of soul creation was lost with the fall of ancient civilizations.

Magic users have two uses for the souls of other creatures. Firstly, souls are great sources of magic. Even the souls of non-magical creatures contain a lot of it, so sacrificing them during a magical ritual is a very efficient way of providing the necessary energy to power it. Secondly, a soul is required if one wants to create magical servants that do not need to be directed like a marionette. It acts as the servant's mind.

As it is nearly impossible to create souls, most magic users have to settle for taking the souls of already living beings to create magical servants, such as loyal golems or elementals. The stronger and more complex the soul of the living being in question is, the easier it is to accomplish something with it because it comes with more potential right out of the body. However, it is more difficult to control since its own will is more powerful as well and not easily subdued. If one were to make a servant out of a lin's soul, they might actually just end up transferring their soul from their organic body into another vessel. This would not result in a servant but in a very angry lin with a free will stuck in a vessel and body it likely never wanted.

It is possible to alter souls, but taking the free will out of a complex soul to replace it with undying loyalty to a given entity is a formidable task. Few are capable of it. Manipulating weak souls  (e.g., that of a rat or similar) is much easier. The downside is that a weak soul is not capable of a whole lot. It likely would not even know how to move the new body it is given, so it would not make for a good servant either. Thankfully, it is possible to enhance weak souls to make them stronger. This too is a difficult and energy consuming task, but it is not nearly as hard as subduing a complex soul. It allows the creator to use the soul of a Threan dog equivalent as the mind for a lin-shaped golem made out of steel, for example.

Each vessel passively protects its soul. It is impossible to alter, transfer, or extinguish a soul while it is safely stored within a vessel, unless the vessel is a crystal, bulb, or force field that is not attached to a body of sorts or the vessel has been magically enchanted to make drawing a soul from it possible. Once the vessel has been destroyed, the soul is vulnerable.

Each soul passively protects its vessel and body. The izizik part of the soul is to be thanked for this. It naturally forms a barrier around the body, intercepting any attempt to magically alter it, making this an extremely difficult task. The stronger the connection between soul, vessel, and body, the more daunting the task becomes. The strongest connection exists between a naturally born organic body and the soul it has been born with. It is so powerful that no mage could hope to overcome the protection it grants. The body has to die first, and thus the soul forced to lose its grip on it, before the body can be magically altered. A weak connection allows the direct manipulation of the soul's vessel and body. Bonds between souls and vessels which they do not naturally belong into tend to be comparably weak.

By protecting the body from being magically messed with, the soul also prevents that it or things within it can be magically sensed. An azizik user cannot sense the blood flowing in an animal's veins, an aezizik user cannot sense the air within its lungs, etc. However, the soul itself can be sensed by any magic user, unless it is somehow concealed from magic senses.

Alchemy

Various kinds of fantastical, magical concoctions can be created by those learned in the ways of alchemy. They take the form of potions, salves, poultices, powders, and the like, and have unnatural effects that go far beyond anything a mixture of ordinary herbs could achieve. Among these effects are the rapid healing of injuries, the doubling of the consumer's strength, agility, or other physical attributes, and much more. Master alchemists can even produce a salve that makes whatever creature they are applied to invisible or an intravenously applied infusion that allows one to naturally assume a nokzizik form.

Alchemy is not limitless in what it can achieve and is in fact more limited than using magic. For example, an alchemist could not produce a potion that enables one to throw an explosive fireball, whereas capable mages of blazizik most certainly can throw such devastating spells. Also, most alchemical effects are temporary. Healing is among the very few effects that are permanent. The advantage of alchemy is that anyone can practice it, no matter if they possess the arcane gift or not. Its use is thus more common than spellcasting and, by some, considered the magic of the non-magical.

The ingredients used in alchemy are magical in nature. Only with magical ingredients can extraordinary effects be achieved. However, mundane components are still a part of many concoctions because they can have a variety of pleasant effects such as improving the taste of the mixture or making it easier on the stomach. Magical substances can only be obtained from superior magical creatures and magical plants. The body parts of kul, for example, are a prized ingredient for a variety of strong recipes. A generally applicable rule of alchemy is: The stronger a product is, the more rare and difficult to acquire are its components because the more dangerous are the animals and/or plants they must be harvested from.