Power Carriers in Gormhan | World Anvil

Power Carriers

Power carriers, discovered in the blood of even Shui-born humans with no aignaoi ancestry nor naer gifts, are considered to be the source of life and soul, the Creator's gift to human- and dragon-kind. The bottom score of 0.01 denotes the minimum number of power carriers per part of blood.  

History

In 1103, the first power leveling test was invented by Edgar Waveworth Clearwater. Before this, "powerful" denoted whether someone could beat another person in a fight; now it could be numbered. Crathlian Paragons embraced the idea and had themselves tested. Today, Katherine Desfade Weatherby's DWMST method is used to test power carrier concentration, and this number is used to officially categorize Crathlians and determines the heads of noble Paragon families and even the next king or queen. The highest scorers, after all, are the most powerful, and that has long been the governing principle at the heart of Paragon thought: the most powerful are the most fit to rule.  

Abilities by Power Carrier Concentration

 
The power carrier concentration is a measure of how much extra power a person has that exceeds their need for survival.
 

New Capabilities Based on Power Carrier Concentration

  • 0.01- regulating body functions, carrying energy throughout the body (in Crathlia: Dregs)
  • 50.00- telekinesis (in Crathlia: Amalgams)
  • 100.00- abilities that allow them to manipulate the world around them in a specific way (no creating life, e.g. no plants appearing out of nothing) (in Crathlia: Paragons)
  • 200.00- telepathy (the ability to experience the thoughts/emotions/memories of others and communicate with them)
  • 300.00- manipulation of their raw energy (in theory, the ability to do anything any Paragon can do; in practice, generally specializing in 2 or 3 Paragon abilities) (no creating life, e.g. no plants appearing out of nothing)
  • 400.00- shapeshifting
  • 500.00- no one is capable of properly wielding such power consciously (only aignaoithe score this highly)

Dragons

The aignaoi or naer body is optimal for telepathic communication. This is how both species of dragon use this as their main language. In dragon form, shapeshifters are not capable of using their abilities to manipulate their environment (fire creation being a notable exception).

Humans

The human body is optimal for manipulation of the world around it (i.e. using telekinesis and Paragon abilities). Telepathic communication, however, is extremely hampered. One must touch another (e.g. in convergence) to communicate or experience the emotions of others. It takes much more effort than in dragon form to do this.
 

Inheritance

Power carrier concentration is genetically inherited and typically falls in between one's parents. It is possible to have a concentration higher or lower than a person's parents, though relatively rare. This is a genetic fluke and not fully understood. King Leonard Whitewave, along with many others who have married into the Alderley Clan, is one of these people.  

Maturity

Maturity is defined as when a person is able to harness his or her full capabilities. In other words, all of his or her power carriers are open and functioning. At and before this time, signs of power (subconscious telekinesis, bursts of energy, response to stress, etc.) will become apparent. The higher the score, the longer it takes to reach maturity.   According to recent research, Dregs reach maturity anywhere between one day (this would be the absolute bottom score of 0.01) and one year. However, scientists are still unsure of the exact effects of power carriers on Dregs. It is known that they're needed for survival, since Dregs with very low scores can be killed by Drainers, and it is believed that "physical abilities" entail carrying energy throughout the body. Some researchers believe they affect mood and sleep. I am no scientist, so I will leave this discussion to wiser minds than I.   Amalgams usually reach maturity within two to five years. Thus, many of them are capable of telekinesis when they are very young children. Many don't remember ever learning how to levitate small objects.   Paragons often do not reach maturity until six to ten years of age. The highest scorers frequently do not display signs of power until shortly before or even, in some cases, after their testing session. Some Paragon children are retested at eleven for this reason.
Who has power carriers?
All sapient beings, including aignaoithe, naered, and humans have been found to have power carriers.
 
Who has abilities from power carriers?
Amalgams - Telekinesis.
Paragons - Telekinesis and one other ability (a combination of one or more of those listed below).
Shapeshifters - Telekinesis, all abilities listed below, and telepathy.
Non-Shapeshifting Aignaoithe - Telepathy and fire breath.
Naered - Telepathy and other abilities that are not fully understood by Crathlian scientists.
 
 
Stonebreak's Paragon Building Blocks
- Ground
- Metal
- Water
- Air
- Fire
- Cold
- Biology
- Waves
- Energy
 
On Biological Abilities
The most common Biological abilities by far are Healing (manipulation of specific cells involved in the immune system, platelets, etc.) and Draining (manipulation of power carriers). A much rarer example of a Biological ability is the ability to alter one's own physical appearance. Rarer still, and unique to one person in the modern era, is the ability to speed up or slow down the growth of plants. For more information, see Lyndon Stelcraft.
 
Examples of Living Paragons with 2 Building Blocks
 
3+ Building Blocks
 
1 Building Block
  • Kyle Stelworth Blackburn is considered to be pure Fire.
  • Most Paragons with Biological abilities manifest only one building block.

Limitations and Mechanics

Note: Paragons' abilities are also skills that are limited by test score, amount of practice, and amount of concentration. These are more complex to explain and differ from person to person. I use telekinesis as an example here because most Crathlians have experience with it and because of its relative simplicity.
  Like most skills, telekinesis is, for the most part, limited only by natural ability, amount of practice, and amount of concentration.   However, there are some notable external limitations. Unless one possesses a Paragon ability related to Water or Air, one can only pick up solids. Liquids and gasses cannot be moved with telekinesis—their particles are not packed densely enough. Another external limitation is line of sight, but this can be circumvented (albeit with much training and difficulty), as discussed below.  

Power Carrier Concentration

It is believed that the higher the power carrier concentration, the easier it comes (the less concentration/training that's necessary), the heavier the objects that can be picked up naturally (without training), and the longer it can be maintained naturally. However, I'll go ahead and mention that though I score higher than any other living Crathlian at 153.05, I am not particularly skilled with telekinesis, and certainly not more skilled than my brother, who scores a mere 112.89. Granted, Gabe has a lot more training and natural strength than I. I strongly suspect that the idea that a high score translates to easier telekinetic abilities is a myth that persists because it further legitimizes the system of noble inheritance. But I digress.  

Flight

We humans have long yearned for the skies, and many of the best warriors throughout history have made it their goal to lift themselves with telekinesis. But flight has proved nearly impossible. These are the five known martial artists who have achieved it:  
1. Eadweard Skyclimber (former name unknown, circa 670)   4. Herbert Conner Ackerman (1126)
2. Myrna Skymarch (former name Myrna Highwaters Daymarch, 876)   5. Brigid Pressman Woodward (1178)
3. Neil Windrider (formerly known as Neil Colwyne Firefell, 985)
  All whose ages were known were at least fifty by the time they achieved it. Note that the last two martial artists were Amalgams and that flight hasn't been touched in over a hundred years.  

Weight

Objects that can be picked up with one's own physical strength can usually be picked up naturally with telekinesis. Heavier and larger objects often require a certain amount of training and pushing the limits of one's capabilities.  

Distance

The farther away an object is, the more difficult it is to pick it up. The world record for maximum distance from an object levitated is half a mile, achieved by Gregory Daymarch in the 1180s. Some Amalgams have recently reported that they are able to pick up objects seen in video feeds, but the truth of these reports is doubtful.

Sight

Telekinesis is also limited to objects in one's line of sight, unless one has specifically trained for this purpose. Even then, it is said to require much visualization and/or kinesthetic "feeling." The best Amalgams have achieved this ability.  

Consistency

Without constant practice, many capabilities reached through training deteriorate over time. Exceptions reportedly include picking oneself up and using telekinesis without sight because these have more to do with muscle memory than anything else (similar to learning how to ride a bicycle).

Articles under Power Carriers


Cover image: by ReachingForStardust

Comments

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May 18, 2021 17:44 by Marshall H

Mmmm. Schmexy formatting. Great Work!   "These elements were defined by Aileen Stonebreak in the 800s in her studies of a large number of Paragon abilities and their similarities. Ordered from most physical to least physical (and what Stonebreak termed as being closest to shapeshifters), these classifications are still used today. Most Paragons have a combination of two of these abilities, but some only have one (especially those with Biological abilities) and some are thought to be a combination of three or more."   This paragraph in your side bar feels kind of block and theres just too many parenthesis for me to follow it coheseviely.

May 19, 2021 16:48

Thanks so much for the feedback! It kinda made me realize I was trying to get into Aileen Stonebreak's article in this article, so I moved that information onto her article and revamped the sidebar to better get across the information that's relevant for the magic system. If you've got any feedback on the new sidebar I'd love to hear it!

In Gormhan, an ancient magic-using nobility clings to its power in a high-tech 1950s-inspired world. There are dragons too!
May 19, 2021 19:00 by Marshall H

looks very sexy and reads much better. Good work.

May 19, 2021 19:46

Heck yeah :D glad to hear it!

In Gormhan, an ancient magic-using nobility clings to its power in a high-tech 1950s-inspired world. There are dragons too!
May 19, 2021 12:55 by Amélie I. S. Debruyne

Great magic system :D I like the idea of them being able to "score" magical abilities and using that to structure their society.

To see what I am up to: World Ember 2023 list of articles.
May 19, 2021 16:51

Thank you, I'm so glad you like it! The score-based magic system (and corresponding societal structure) is what came to me first with this world - it's the foundation of it and why I keep coming back to build more of this world after so many years!

In Gormhan, an ancient magic-using nobility clings to its power in a high-tech 1950s-inspired world. There are dragons too!