Magic

In the world of Tarab, there are several ways to use and manipulate magic. These follow the general guidelines for Divine vs. Arcane, but with a few flavor differences.

Divine Magic:

This is the kind of magic that is granted by a powerful cosmological force. Though the One is considered to be the source of all divine power, the fact that it is not a manifest deity makes it nearly impossible to be entirely certain. Regardless of its actualized presence or not, there are certainly powerful beings known as Malak (Angels) who act (or claim to act) as intermediaries for the One, and they are opposed by those who serve Iblis and the Shayateen. Likewise, mortals known as Prophets have exhibited either divine power or a direct connection with the divine, and many who follow them gain power through their service or great devotion. Those who do not follow a particular entity but rather look for the link to the divine within themselves are known as mystics, and have in some instances also exhibited divine spellcasting ability. These are all possible sources for divine spellcasters of any alignment.

Arcane Magic:

Tarab is infused with magic- literally woven with it. All beings can sense this, albeit most do not do so consciously. Those who have trained for years can learn to tap into this source of power- known as Mana- and alter it to suit their needs and desires. This is arcane magic, and while it does not require subservience to a higher power, it does come with a price: the amount of magical power invested within a particular area is finite, and only replenishes when re-infused with the life energy of living creatures. This normally follows the life cycle, and as creatures are born, grow old and die, so too does the magic within the land diminish and replenish. However, extensive use of arcane magic can drain a localized area to the brink, making the ground unable to support plant life, disrupting rain and water cycles, and, perhaps most immediately to the user in question, creating a zone of dead magic that makes spellcasting impossible. Thus, most mages take pains to avoid unnecessary and “wasteful” spellcasting, and in most civilized areas abuses are monitored and punished by the local government or, barring that, any consortium of concerned magic users. Wizardry is the study of the science and art of extracting this power to meet a set of pre-concieved parameters to create a desired effect. To the common knowledge of most, there is only one sorcerer in the entirety of Tarab- The Oracle of the Black Stone. Accusing anyone of sorcery is a serious charge, and those suspected of it are generally deemed users of witchcraft and are taken away, alive but rarely ever seen again.

Ancient Magic:

Referred to as Pagan Magic by followers of the One and the Last Prophet, this is the kind of magic used by Druids and Rangers that comes from worship of the land itself, pagan gods, or animal spirits. While considered Divine Magic, it is somewhat different in of that it draws from the natural Mana of the land (the same source of Arcane magic), but in a very different way from that of Wizardry. Rather than draining a localized node of magic, users of Ancient Magic use worship rituals dedicated to ancient polytheistic pantheons, fertility goddesses, animal spirits, or other such idols to imbue a portion of their own lifeforce in the land, and in return receive a “gift” of spellcasting power. These rituals vary, but tend to involve regular fasting and sacrifices or offerings of food or blood.

Music, the Inspired Magic>

Tarab is a land of music, poetry, and artistic beauty. The arts are revered as having a magic of their own, and there are some who can make that manifest. While wizards tend to see magic as a complex equation of power-to-cause-to-effect, bards and a few others see magic for what they believe it really is- a song of praise to all life and its Creator. Through sheer artistic and aesthetic beauty, they can create magical effects without aid of spellbooks or holy symbols. Though still considered Arcane magic, Inspired Magic does not drain magical energy in the same manner as Wizardry- instead, users liken the experience to playing an instrument, upon which they are but strumming chords. However, Mana must be present for Inspired Magic to be effective, and thus it does not function in a dead magic area. Because of its sympathetic rather than consumptive nature, bards and other users of Inspired Magic do not suffer the same restrictions and social stigma of some wizards, and are often valued members of their communities.

Oaths:

In Tarab, Oaths can have as much strength as an actual spell, and their effects, while not necessarily always visible, are always binding. The effect varies from Oath to Oath, but they should never be taken lightly in the lands of Tarab.

Associated Magic:

Sometimes, it is not necessary for an item to be enchanted by a mage to become a great and powerful artifact. If Hakim the Conqueror used the same sword to fell a hundred foes of his tribe in the course of a campaign, some of the great warriors power and presence may have instilled itself into the weapon. Two hundred years later, when Hakim’s great-great-grandson Hamid the Just finds his homeland threatened by his ancestor’s hated foes, he takes up the sword that has been passed down for generations, expecting it to be frail and dull. To his surprise, it is sharper than normal steel and seems to seethe with bloodlust for his foes, hewing even their sturdiest warriors with ease. Though originally only a masterwork longsword when forged, it is now a +1 Bane Longsword, and Hamid’s enemies scatter before him, retreating to find some less fearsome targets to harry. This is an example of associated magic, that for reasons unknown sometimes infuses objects or places with fantastic properties that would normally require a wizard of some skill to create. Associated magic usually comes from great deeds, the fulfillment of Oaths, or major events, be they bountiful or cataclysmic.

Magic

Tarab Ammar