Crafting materials and anti-magic metal

Table of Contents

Crafting—the making of magical artefact or craft as they are technically called names—requires many specialised materials. The same materials can also be used in many other disciplines such as alchemy or the making of elixirs and medicine, but crafting is the most exigent and less forgiving in matters of quality.   Crafting materials is any regular material such as rocks picked from the ground or mined, wood or other plant material, or wool or animal material. The difference with normal materials is in the quantity and quality of the magic that is absorbed inside of them before they are harvested.  

The production of crafting materials

Crafting materials require a long process before they can be judged adequate to actually be used in crafting. Taking the example of wood, the work start even before the tree is planted with a careful preparation of the soil. This preparation concerns not only its nutrient and chemical compositions but also in the amount and nature of its magic. It is during this step that conscientious master crafters can inject some of their own magic and blood into the soil to feed the future tree.   Then the seed is planted and the tree grows, feeding on the magic given to it by its human caretakers, but also on the Land's magic. This is why the link between a ruler and their Land's magic is essential and why it is important for rulers and their subjects to participate in solstice and equinox rituals and other religious ceremonies, as they feed back magic to the Land to nourish all of its inhabitants—humans, animals, plants, rocks... If a ruler neglects their tasks, the life quality of everyone and everything leaving in their Estate will suffers as well as the quality of the crafting material they produce.   Once the tree is fully grown, the technique of harvesting, cutting and storage of its wood will also influence how the magic behaves inside of it and is conserved. All of this highlight how versatile the production of crafting material is and how from a same tree family one can end up with vastly different qualities of wood. All masters crafters need to perfectly understand the materials they use and how to choose the best one for each specific crafts they are creating.   Indeed, it is not a case of the amount of magic inside the material being the only important detail, or that as much magic as possible is always the best answer. Magic particles attach to special molecules inside the materials—protein complexes inside living matters or particular crystal formations in rocks. Depending on environmental conditions and triggers, those molecules can morph into other molecules or break down and either trap or free their magical particles.   Creating just one of the crafting materials for one specific application is a demanding task requiring enormous amounts of knowledge, and it is what most workers are specialised in. Those workers are all gathered inside organisations led by masters crafters, with all of those under the more or less direct authority of the ruler of the Estate where they are located.   Few organisations have the patience, dedication, and rigour to carry out such an elaborate work from start to finish, and as such crafting materials from the Estates that do have an enormous value. The Estates of Alyssenne and Lyrienne are the most renown in the empire in that domain.
Wood that will be used as crafting materials by PublicDomainPictures on Pixabay
Wooden case
A crafted wooden case by ds30 on Pixabay
Lady Merisse sneered as she looked over the accounts of her brand new Estate. It was barely worth the name of an Estate, poor as it was. Barely only farming or crafting material productions and only mediocre master crafters. No wonder nobody else had been willing to claim it...   It would take far more than a few orders to rectify the situation. She would need to get in some competent men to teach the locals about proper caring of the plants, rituals to appease the Land's magic so that it would settle properly in them—and soothing the Land's hatred of her alone would take time.   No, if she wanted to make her Estate as strong as she herself was, if she wanted to be fully out of danger from rebellions against her rule, she would have to be more imaginative. She had to think. What did the mountain region have that was unique to it and that she could exploit?

Anti-magic materials

In the Orage Mountain, the constant and violent magical storms occurring have highlighted the presence of some special rocks in the underground. Indeed, small animals living there can take refuge inside some special rock formations that are able to absorb the huge quantity of magic released by the storms.   The nature of those rocks has always intrigued the inhabitants of the region, but the dangerousness of the mountains has long precluded their close examination. It is at the height of the fighting between the north and south coalitions between -3000 and -2000 that the House of Arianie, the leaders of the north, heard of the stories and took and interest themselves in the rocks.   At their behest, all Estates located in the mountain region brave the storms and local wildlife to go in search of the rocks. Once same were secured, it was quickly discovered that there were danger too in mining them and refining them. Indeed, the anti-magic properties were found to come from small metal inclusions inside the rocks. The rock itself is crumbly and will easily form a fine powder that is deadly when breathed in. It also has the unfortunate tendency of going through all shields and wards, making sure that few survive working with it.   Yet the Arianiens and their allies did not mind sacrificing a few workers to the task, and they managed to refine the rocks enough to obtain a pure pale silver metal that they called larche. From this metal, the Arianiens made many famous weapons that they used against the Alyssennes and Lyriennes, the leaders of the opposing factions.   Since the fall of House Arianie, all those weapons have disappeared without traces, lurking somewhere in the hands of mysterious parties...

A larche weapon by Johanna84 on P
Lady Merisse exhaled jerkily and rose a shaking hand towards the stones that had been placed on the desk in front of her. She had never seen it before, but there was really no need. Even with a few centimetres still separating them, she could already feel the magical particles forcefully getting dragged out of her body.   If that was what a lump of unpurified rock could do, then what would the purified metal?   But that was not something she would ever be able to witness. Larche was too scarce. To get enough to even only get a measly sphere of one centimetre of diameter would already require excavating nearly a ton of rocks. The conditions in the mountains were too dangerous, not even mentioning the risks in the refining itself. Even if she were willing to sacrifice her people to it, she would not have enough of them.   But...   "Contact the Veinianies," she ordered. "We are in need of a few hundred silk masks from them."

If you want to read more about Lady Merisse's story, you can go here:  

Cover image: A rock with metallic inclusions by Stux on Pixabay


Author's Notes

Thanks to Angantyr for giving me the idea to write about eh rocks with the anti-magic properties.

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21 Dec, 2021 01:11

Scary rocks. D: It's quite alarming how the particles can travel through magical shields.   I also really like that the care in the growing/preparation of materials has a nticeable effect on their quality.

Emy x   Etrea | Vazdimet
Eternal Sage AmélieIS
Amélie I. S. Debruyne
21 Dec, 2021 10:57

Gotta make everything more complicated for people to make them suffer :p

To see what I am up to:WE list of articles and goals.
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