Magic and the Empire
"From the Twelfth Day of Solas 1331, any individual found to be committing, or have committed a magical act, without an authentic ‘Magical Practitioner’s Licence’, will be guilty of an offence under Emperor’s decree XI."
HistoryHistorically, the legislative powers of Revaelor (renamed the City of Malvarron in 1331), championed the use of magic as a technological tool for societal advancement. Many people, Duke Fernando included, sought the council of the Magi for advice on political, economic and social issues, and the Church of Ethera regarded magic as a gift from the divine Mother.
With over a thousand of the capital’s citizens declared ‘mind dead’ and euthanized as a result, people looked for someone to blame. Therefore, when Malvarro presented the magical population as demon-worshipping saboteurs intent on destroying the liberty of the Revaelorians, most of the population ate it up. Malvarro presented Duke Tarryn as a puppet, weak-willed and unable to stand up to the evil that was the influence of the Magi. Malvarro’s focus on dark magic as the cause for all the tragedies of the ‘Era of Unbearable Sorrow’ was the primary reason he could garner enough sympathy and popular support for the 1331 revolution, ensuring its success.
However, as food in the capital became scarce, as the chasm between the nobility and poor widened and unexplained sickness spread throughout the Duchy, the people looked for someone to blame for their ills. And the Magi, as a significant minority, were easy targets. Distrust and prejudice spread through the Duchy like wildfire. Enter an outspoken war general with a personal grudge against magic and an insatiable hunger for power. Augustas Malvarro rose to fame because of his damning, anti-magical stance. Circumstances of the time aided his resistance movement significantly, but no event prompted more anti-magic feeling amongst ordinary citizens than the mysterious plague which gripped the population of Revaelor in 1325.
Emperor Augustas Malvarro circa. 1370 AE
The LawAmong the first laws Augustas Malvarro introduced after he declared himself Emperor in 1331 were the decrees known as the ‘Regulation of Magic Laws’. These decrees, still enshrined in law today, prohibit the use of all magic and magical items without the use of a state issued permit.
What does the Law Actually say?The law is clear. Any citizen wishing to use magical power, either themselves or through the use of an object, must have a licence approved by the Emperor’s Office for Magical Regulation. The empire will deem adults who continue to practise magic, or those discovered with a magical item without an appropriate licence, to have committed a crime.
”’Magical acts’ include, but are not limited to: incantations, invocations, enchantment, bewitchment and necromancy.”-Emperor’s Decree IX 1331 “Magical items include magical implements such as staffs, wands, and grimoires; enchanted objects such as armour, weaponry and jewellery and magical potions, with the exception of, ointments, salves and herbal brews explicitly for health reasons.”-Emperor’s Decree X 1331.
Applying for a Licence
Applying for a licence is complex and bureaucratic, not to mention expensive. This creates a multitude of obstacles for the lower classes, which highlight the true motives of the empire. The , The Vanguards and The Crimson Blades all have powers to investigate licences and arrest law-breakers. (not that most citizens could refuse a demand from the Emperor’s forces).
An application for a ‘Magical Practitioner’s Licence’ can be submitted to the Office for Magical Regulation in the City of Malvarron or to any approved magical regulator within the individual’s local jurisdiction. This magical regulator is normally a high-ranking officer of the local branch of the Vanguards. Licences are often subject to a fee and require the applicant to fill in several forms. Certificates of Purchase can take weeks to be returned to the applicant whilst licences for both magical practice and distribution can take years.
Magical ChildrenA child in Malvarron is defined as anyone person under 16 years of age. If a child possesses magical abilities, then it becomes the responsibility of a parent or legal guardian to register the child’s magical aptitude following the same procedure as above. According to the decree, failure to do so could result in a fine and/or the imprisonment of the child’s legal guardian. The child should then be allocated to a licenced teaching establishment or facility until the child comes of age. Establishments include state approved magical institutions, temples or physician facilities to be mentored by a state approved magical practitioner. Since the assassination of Emperor Augustas in 1381, the Empire has increased their anti-magi approach. They are making no secret of violent raids by the Crimson Blades to detain magical children and their guardians. There are rumours that the children are being interned at Erragar’s School of Arcana on Tullis Island, which has apparently been turned into a makeshift prison. Many parents have not seen their children for years.
Breaking the Law
Breaking the magical regulation laws leave the ‘offender’ subject to immediate arrest. In theory, a subsequent trial should ensue, presided over by the Chief Overseer for Magical Incidents (COMI) who should determine the sentence. All it takes is for the COMI to suspect that you are a servant of the demon lords, or believe your actions to be reckless and dangerous for you to ‘guilty’. Appeals are rare and sparsely granted, unless of course you have the funds necessary for bribery. Because of this, some magic users attempt to live in secret, but the risk of being found out is great. Malvarron carries the death penalty a the state treats a failure to register as a sign that you have something nefarious to hide.. As licences are difficult to gain, many born with the gift of magic will more than likely end up imprisoned or worse, especially if an individual is born of a lower class.