Imperial Magic Guild
Imperium of Karadia chief magical organization, also considered one of the few strongest magician organization not only in the world as a whole but also in a history as a whole. It was created to further magical progress of Imperium while helping prevent magical crises, with gods, daemons, beasts and magical anomalies as their sources. Its main field of interests is Modern Magic, however despite being mostly grounded in it they also research Old Magic and Aura Manipulation, even if such researches benefit other agendas of Imperium more than themselves. Of course which such immense power comes great responsibility... and even greater threat to the Imperium – as proven many times, with Great Karadian War, Long Night and The Shattering being most prominent examples. Thus members of Imperial Magic Guild are both very powerful and influential... while being under near constant observation, with Brotherhood of Crows, Imperial Inquisition, Imperial Security Organization and even local governors watching them closely, ready to strike if they see warning signs of incoming troubles.
Supreme leadership of Imperial Magic Guild is, in fact, dual – which pretty much speaks how much Imperium is afraid of mages having too much power. First leadership is Silver Council, a shadow cabal of archmagicians, archdaemons, daemon lords, Awakened, Ascended aura manipulators, supreme alchemists and so on. Its number and most members unknown. While on first glance it seems to be a very bad idea, on the other one this makes it more or less safe, with members spending most of the time backstabbing each other and leading neverending civil wars – nearly equally incomprehensible for average observer as gods Great Game is. Silver Council is essentially a deadly decadent court, filled with some of the most powerful men and women (and some 'others') in Karadia, that are then made too busy fighting each other to become a threat. The second power is Imperial Ministry of Magic that due to its power over Great Library and thus magical education, and authority of a member of Imperial Council is capable of overturning each and every decision of Silver Council. Of course, it doesn't actively control all of Imperial Magic Guild work. It can, however, react to suspicions shown by not only members of IMG (anonymous tips happen often) but also by organizations like Brotherhood of Crows and so on that are watching over magicians. Stomping out corruption (fully capable of launching sometimes extensive purges of personnel deemed dangerous) and overturning the Silver Council decisions and rulings. Beneath that level the organization of IMG is heavily split (mostly to once again avoid magicians growing too powerful). Some of them work directly as a part of a Guild, as members of the Imperial Army, Imperial Army's Auxilliary or residents accompanying local governors/important bases or working in magical anomalies. Many return to their countries of origin becoming a part of local magician guilds – that are considered autonomous but still subservient parts of Imperial Magic Guild, responsible before both their local sovereigns and the duo of Silver Council and Imperial Ministry of Magic. Not all of magicians working in the province are up to, many of them remaining officially a direct part of IMG. Becoming a part of subservient guild is sort of a political statement, showing that you feel more attached to your own country rather than to Imperium as a whole. They are allowed quite big level of self-governing, as long as it does not break basic laws of Imperium (including using certain types of magic, trying to subvert the Imperium, not contributing written treaties and so on to Imperial Library etc. Only in crises Imperium tends to demand certain actions and cooperation, with varying successes.
Public agenda of Imperial Magic Guild is simply – protecting Imperium and its citizen from magical threats while gaining any possible knowledge and furthering technomagical progress to ensure their long-term wellbeing. This means countering daemonic incursions, taking down rogue Daemon Lords or magicians, helping Imperium during wars, being an important part of imperial economy and finding new uses for magic powers. They are also tasked with prosecuting warfare against magic-themed sects and independent magical organizations like Circle of Stars, Revolutionary Front, Northwind, New Dawn etc., which are a legion.
Immense ammount of magicians, equally immense wealth in elusive magical resources, various magical equipment and so on (some of them privately owned by members, others for public use). Many buildings and laboratories both in the Falon-nir and in all provinces of Imperium. If situations requires it, they can also call for help from Brotherhood of Crows, 101st. Infantry Division, Imperial Army's Auxilliary and multiple knight orders plus local governments and their military power.
Its exact date and history of creation is unknown, due to Imperial Magic Guild being created according to will of Gods during the Dawn War. There are at least 30 different theories, all of them with evidence backing them and all of them probably equally true. It was created to replace previously existing Circle of Stars that broke down during the Dawn War due to being made by members more loyal to the vassal states than to the Imperium – and its gods – imperial loyalists formed core of Imperial Magic Guild, with the autonomy system introduce following the ultimate victory of Imperial Religion in the aftermath of Dawn War.
Demography and Population
There are several ways to join Imperial Magic Guild, that can be summed to getting to study magic in Imperial University and surviving the training. Word 'surviving' isn't an exaggeration, since many magicians never end the education, earlier 'dissapeared' or simply eliminated. Magic is a power rooted in imagination and emotions, tending to expand already existing flaws in the psychic, making those eccentric into madmen, while madmen into something else entirely. Most such flaws are discovered early, the offender either expelled and turned into much weaker sorcerer or having his magic taken, depending on the type and severity of detected imperfections. The prefered type of person is one of stable psyche, no criminal history, typical and happy marriage with children (makes it less possible to go mad), devoutness or at least simple faith but without fanaticism, lack of traumas and phobias etc. However, due to becoming magicians strenghtening their connection to Dark, this standard tends to slightly change, making mages not much more 'standard' in any way than simple mortals. The easiest way to begin is being a children of one or two of IGM members, which makes joining it rather easy due to plain old nepotism. The Imperium actually wishes this to be often, simply because magician parents tend to be much more capable of detecting certain unneeded traits while themselves already being model magicians – which makes transfering 'positive' traits much more often. The equally easy is being a son/daughter of one of imperial Houses – each of them has its own little domains in both Imperial Magic Guild and Imperium as a whole, making securing entry much easier. Which is actually partially like and partially disliked – this type of nepotism leads often to dysfunctional magicians. It is also easy if you are wealthy, with many local aristocracy and merchants simply paying enough money (quite big ammount to be exact) for their children to enter the University. This also happens sometimes among sufficiently succesful adventurers etc. Each vassal country has a set quota (dependant on their loyalty and population) of people it can sent to University without paying a single coin. How they use it depends on their own political and social systems. Some focus on aristocracy and nobility, allowing it to somehow lower the demographic pressure by sending competent younger sons for other career paths, others – with sufficiently expanded public education – let some unpolished gems found among peasantry to become magicians. Also – gods Chosen Ones tend to be allowed in regardless of their age and status, as long as they wish to. They always turn out to be most profficient magicians due to their blessings, making them important asset.
- Guild, Mages